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FBI wants records kept of Web sites visited

 
 
Reply Fri 5 Feb, 2010 03:59 pm
From cnet news:

February 5, 2010 9:16 AM PST

The FBI is pressing Internet service providers to record which Web sites customers visit and retain those logs for two years, a requirement that law enforcement believes could help it in investigations of child pornography and other serious crimes.


FBI Director Robert Mueller supports storing Internet users' "origin and destination information," a bureau attorney said at a federal task force meeting on Thursday.

As far back as a 2006 speech, Mueller had called for data retention on the part of Internet providers, and emphasized the point two years later when explicitly asking Congress to enact a law making it mandatory. But it had not been clear before that the FBI was asking companies to begin to keep logs of what Web sites are visited, which few if any currently do.

The FBI is not alone in renewing its push for data retention. As CNET reported earlier this week, a survey of state computer crime investigators found them to be nearly unanimous in supporting the idea. Matt Dunn, an Immigration and Customs Enforcement agent in the Department of Homeland Security, also expressed support for the idea during the task force meeting.

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Read Full Story Here
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It is one thing to tap someones service when criminal activity is suspected, but it is quite another to collect data just in case.

Prior restraint used to be unconstitutional.

We are all criminals now, my brothers!
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Type: Discussion • Score: 1 • Views: 4,147 • Replies: 85
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xris
 
  1  
Reply Sat 6 Feb, 2010 09:29 am
@Pythagorean,
Ive got to be honest yet again I have mixed feelings. I would be grateful if they could catch every little nasty perv that breaths and lock them up but removing one more freedom gives me worries, I cant express.
0 Replies
 
Krumple
 
  1  
Reply Sat 6 Feb, 2010 09:53 am
@Pythagorean,
How easy would it be to frame someone using this sort of data? You can't place an actual person at their computer when such visits to those kinds of sites occur. This type of data is worse than polygraph or hearsay testimony.

All you would have to do, if you didn't like someone is ask to use their computer and when they aren't around you log into these kinds of sights. You probably could do it without them even knowing you are using their system too. This is just one method of how such information could be abused.
0 Replies
 
jgweed
 
  1  
Reply Sat 6 Feb, 2010 11:05 am
@Pythagorean,
If we were all forced to have an electronic monitor embedded under our skin, this too would help the FBI track down "child molesters"---and anyone else they decide to look into. It is bad enough that over the last few years, under the aegis of keeping everyone safe from terrorists and criminals we are subject in our daily activities to visual monitoring and who knows what else, including the confiscation of computers at airports without court warrant, but one by one we are surrendering our privacy to government and told to "trust" them not to abuse their powers.
Krumple
 
  1  
Reply Sat 6 Feb, 2010 11:58 am
@Pythagorean,
It reminds me of high school. When one person broke the rules everyone was punished for it. I hated that because it punishes the good people and why should good people be brought down just so you can catch a few bad ones? Where is the reward for being good? There isn't ever one. You don't get freedom, because you might abuse your freedom. So in other words there are no good people because at any moment you might do something bad and well we want to catch you doing it.
0 Replies
 
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Sun 7 Feb, 2010 03:02 am
@jgweed,
jgweed;125448 wrote:
If we were all forced to have an electronic monitor embedded under our skin, this too would help the FBI track down "child molesters"---and anyone else they decide to look into.


That's true. But that would be an extreme measure that would be universally rejected. And rightly so. But the proposal about the web by the FBI is certainly not nearly as extreme, and may, on examination, be reasonable. Your argument, comparing the FBI proposal, with forcing us to have monitors, and concluding that because the second is unacceptable, so it the first, is a variation on the straw-man fallacy.
0 Replies
 
salima
 
  1  
Reply Sun 7 Feb, 2010 08:46 am
@Pythagorean,
it is very funny to me now to hear about how to track people and what they are doing. there was a time they could track cell phone users and their messages and now you can buy a cheap cell phone and use it and throw it away and who is going to track anyone that way? favorite and necessary tool of terrorists. not to mention you can buy guns at a 'gunshow' and they can not be traced to the buyer. concealed weapons are now legal and if a business does not want people to carry guns they have to post a sign prohibitting guns.

i couldnt believe my eyes when i went to the library and saw a sign 'no guns' along with the 'no smoking' sign. i notice there is no sign on public transportation.

as i see it, any attempts at trying to track people and what they are doing rather than making it easier to stop, deter or capture criminals is going to do nothing else but limit the confidentiality and anonymity of innocent people.

by the way is this only happening in america?
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Sun 7 Feb, 2010 10:33 am
@salima,
salima;125724 wrote:
it is very funny to me now to hear about how to track people and what they are doing. there was a time they could track cell phone users and their messages and now you can buy a cheap cell phone and use it and throw it away and who is going to track anyone that way? favorite and necessary tool of terrorists. not to mention you can buy guns at a 'gunshow' and they can not be traced to the buyer. concealed weapons are now legal and if a business does not want people to carry guns they have to post a sign prohibitting guns.

i couldnt believe my eyes when i went to the library and saw a sign 'no guns' along with the 'no smoking' sign. i notice there is no sign on public transportation.

as i see it, any attempts at trying to track people and what they are doing rather than making it easier to stop, deter or capture criminals is going to do nothing else but limit the confidentiality and anonymity of innocent people.

by the way is this only happening in america?


But tracking people does make it easier to deter people from doing bad things including pedeophilia and terrorism. Is what happening only in America?
0 Replies
 
manored
 
  1  
Reply Sun 7 Feb, 2010 10:37 am
@salima,
Krumple;125423 wrote:
How easy would it be to frame someone using this sort of data? You can't place an actual person at their computer when such visits to those kinds of sites occur. This type of data is worse than polygraph or hearsay testimony.

All you would have to do, if you didn't like someone is ask to use their computer and when they aren't around you log into these kinds of sights. You probably could do it without them even knowing you are using their system too. This is just one method of how such information could be abused.
Now that you mention this, indeed there would be no reliability to this information at all. You could just hack into the person's computer or the database and alter everything at your will. And then we think about it, its already enough that the internet provider must record everything everyone does on the internet for a long time, they probally wouldnt worry much about the security or accuracy of the system... who would have proof of that thet did not store information properly or allowed thenselves to be hacked?

salima;125724 wrote:

as i see it, any attempts at trying to track people and what they are doing rather than making it easier to stop, deter or capture criminals is going to do nothing else but limit the confidentiality and anonymity of innocent people.
I agree, though, im my opinion, an ideal human being has nothing to hide.

salima;125724 wrote:
by the way is this only happening in america?
Its not happening on Brazil, as far as I can tell. Exposed criminality here is plentiful anyway...
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Sun 7 Feb, 2010 10:41 am
@manored,
manored;125754 wrote:


I agree, though, im my opinion, an ideal human being has nothing to hide.

.


So, even if a person is not ideal, but just innocent, why has he anything to hide?
Krumple
 
  1  
Reply Sun 7 Feb, 2010 10:51 am
@manored,
manored;125754 wrote:
Now that you mention this, indeed there would be no reliability to this information at all. You could just hack into the person's computer or the database and alter everything at your will. And then we think about it, its already enough that the internet provider must record everything everyone does on the internet for a long time, they probally wouldnt worry much about the security or accuracy of the system... who would have proof of that thet did not store information properly or allowed thenselves to be hacked?


Good point, it also doesn't account for viruses either. It would be possible to write a virus that uses your browser to visit these sites and it would appear as though you were doing it.
xris
 
  1  
Reply Sun 7 Feb, 2010 11:21 am
@Krumple,
I think the web should be policed , but by how much is open to public debate. I dont know how much of my privacy I would consider loosing. Stopping one nasty paedo from committing his hideous crime is adequate reason but do we trust our administrations enough for them not to abuse their power. Tax fraud ,drug trafficking, would they, could they, turn their backs on it in reality? if by this allowance it exposed another crime.
0 Replies
 
Krumple
 
  1  
Reply Sun 7 Feb, 2010 11:54 am
@Pythagorean,
The problem is, the only thing the government is good at is making black markets. No matter if they made it a death sentence to advertise child porn, people would still do it. Not only that but the incentive to create it would sky rocket. When you make something risky what follows is more profit. So if you really want child porn to go away, don't police it with charging companies who hold these files because you will inevitably make people rich off it because they will find a way to get around the laws. If people are making lots of money from it, it means more children are being victimized not fewer. Think about it, we have had a war on drugs for how long? If you ask any law enforcement officer involved in the prevention of drug trafficking they will tell you they haven't even made a dent in preventing drug selling or use. You really think child porn will be any different? Honestly no, and making any restrictions will cause the problem to get worse not better.
0 Replies
 
manored
 
  1  
Reply Mon 8 Feb, 2010 12:11 pm
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;125755 wrote:
So, even if a person is not ideal, but just innocent, why has he anything to hide?
He has not, but he hides anyway, out of the fear of being found odd/strange/evil by other people.

xris;125766 wrote:
I think the web should be policed , but by how much is open to public debate. I dont know how much of my privacy I would consider loosing. Stopping one nasty paedo from committing his hideous crime is adequate reason but do we trust our administrations enough for them not to abuse their power. Tax fraud ,drug trafficking, would they, could they, turn their backs on it in reality? if by this allowance it exposed another crime.
I think policing the internet wouldnt do much to stop pedophilia, it would only stop photos from circulating the internet. Actually I think it may worsen the problem, pedophilies that only see photos in the internet, made unable to do so, may abuse other children rather than just seeing photos of children abused by others.

Krumple;125773 wrote:
The problem is, the only thing the government is good at is making black markets. No matter if they made it a death sentence to advertise child porn, people would still do it. Not only that but the incentive to create it would sky rocket. When you make something risky what follows is more profit. So if you really want child porn to go away, don't police it with charging companies who hold these files because you will inevitably make people rich off it because they will find a way to get around the laws. If people are making lots of money from it, it means more children are being victimized not fewer. Think about it, we have had a war on drugs for how long? If you ask any law enforcement officer involved in the prevention of drug trafficking they will tell you they haven't even made a dent in preventing drug selling or use. You really think child porn will be any different? Honestly no, and making any restrictions will cause the problem to get worse not better.
I dont think people making more money out of it necessarly means more children are being abused, but I agree that just increasing the punishments wont result in anything. I think what should be prevented is that children are even abused in the first place, rather than preventing the photos of already abused children from circulating around.

Perhaps it would even be better to let these photos circulate around freely, that would likely make it easier to catch the people behind then. And if this were done without a fuss, I think it could be very efficient.

By the way, on this topic, I heard a old lady in USA was arrested because she was sitting in a park watching children play, and it is forbidden to watch children play in the USA. Is that true? That would be a really over-the-top law in my book =)
0 Replies
 
Zetherin
 
  1  
Reply Mon 8 Feb, 2010 12:50 pm
@Pythagorean,
kennethamy wrote:

So, even if a person is not ideal, but just innocent, why has he anything to hide?


Have you heard of the term "privacy"?
xris
 
  1  
Reply Mon 8 Feb, 2010 01:34 pm
@Zetherin,
I cant agree that policing the web should be avoided because it might drive paedoes to find other means to exploit children. We should search them out and destroy them wherever they ply their filthy business. In all honesty I would consider loosing my privacy if it meant children would be safer. I might fight the system if it exploited that allowance.
Jebediah
 
  1  
Reply Mon 8 Feb, 2010 01:53 pm
@Pythagorean,
This could be fine, depending on how you do it.

Your web company already knows every website you visit. They don't necessarily keep records. Presumably the FBI would need a warrant to request the records of a person. In which case it's just an extension of them getting a warrant to go into someones house and search their computer.
xris
 
  1  
Reply Mon 8 Feb, 2010 02:27 pm
@Jebediah,
Jebediah;126210 wrote:
This could be fine, depending on how you do it.

Your web company already knows every website you visit. They don't necessarily keep records. Presumably the FBI would need a warrant to request the records of a person. In which case it's just an extension of them getting a warrant to go into someones house and search their computer.
If the law made it clear how and why they could and the provider abides by that regulation , I cant see a problem. I dont ever find myself visiting a site that any might find illegal in any sense. I would like an example of this breach of freedom, before I had a determined view on the ethics it questioned.
0 Replies
 
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Mon 8 Feb, 2010 02:30 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;126193 wrote:
Have you heard of the term "privacy"?


Sure. Pedophiles and terrorists have no right to privacy. I am not an ACLU type.
Zetherin
 
  1  
Reply Mon 8 Feb, 2010 02:35 pm
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;126218 wrote:
Sure. Pedophiles and terrorists have no right to privacy.


But even if that's true, what's being done here is taking away the privacy of everyone. I'd rather give pedophiles their privacy than have mine forcibly removed. And it's not about "having something to hide". I don't have anything to hide when I'm on the toilet, but I still want my privacy. And I also want it when I'm on the computer.

Find a better way to catch the sickos, I say.
 

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