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Re: Bill proposes ISPs, Wi-Fi keep logs for police

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So the local coffee shop is up to the task of supplying forensic
evidence in criminal trials.

Lookout wrote:
> Big Brother will be watching more than ever
> Republican politicians on Thursday called for a sweeping new federal
> law that would require all Internet providers and operators of
> millions of Wi-Fi access points, even hotels, local coffee shops, and
> home users, to keep records about users for two years to aid police
> investigations.
> U.S. Sen. John Cornyn of Texas, supporter of a bill that would require
> Internet user records to be saved for police.
> The legislation, which echoes a measure proposed by one of their
> Democratic colleagues three years ago, would impose unprecedented data
> retention requirements on a broad swath of Internet access providers
> and is certain to draw fire from businesses and privacy advocates.
> "While the Internet has generated many positive changes in the way we
> communicate and do business, its limitless nature offers anonymity
> that has opened the door to criminals looking to harm innocent
> children," U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, a Texas Republican, said at a press
> conference on Thursday.
> "Keeping our children safe requires cooperation on the local, state,
> federal, and family level."
> Joining Cornyn was Texas Rep. Lamar Smith, the senior Republican on
> the House Judiciary Committee, and Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott,
> who said such a measure would let "law enforcement stay ahead of the
> criminals."
> Two bills have been introduced so far--S.436 in the Senate and
> H.R.1076 in the House. Each of the companion bills is titled "Internet
> Stopping Adults Facilitating the Exploitation of Today's Youth Act,"
> or Internet Safety Act.
> Each contains the same language: "A provider of an electronic
> communication service or remote computing service shall retain for a
> period of at least two years all records or other information
> pertaining to the identity of a user of a temporarily assigned network
> address the service assigns to that user."
> Translated, the Internet Safety Act applies not just to AT&T, Comcast,
> Verizon, and so on--but also to the tens of millions of homes with
> Wi-Fi access points or wired routers that use the standard method of
> dynamically assigning temporary addresses. (That method is called
> Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol, or DHCP.)
> "Everyone has to keep such information," says Albert Gidari, a partner
> at the Perkins Coie law firm in Seattle who specializes in this area
> of electronic privacy law.
> The legal definition of electronic communication service is "any
> service which provides to users thereof the ability to send or receive
> wire or electronic communications." The U.S. Justice Department's
> position is that any service "that provides others with means of
> communicating electronically" qualifies.
> That sweeps in not just public Wi-Fi access points, but
> password-protected ones too, and applies to individuals, small
> businesses, large corporations, libraries, schools, universities, and
> even government agencies. Voice over IP services may be covered too.
> Under the Internet Safety Act, all of those would have to keep logs
> for at least two years. It "covers every employer that uses DHCP for
> its network," Gidari said. "It covers Aircell on airplanes-- hose
> little pico cells will have to store a lot of data for those
> in-the-air Internet users."
> In the Bush administration, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales had
> called for a very similar proposal, saying that subscriber information
> and network data should be logged for two years.
> Until Gonzales' remarks in 2006, the Bush administration had generally
> opposed laws requiring data retention, saying it had "serious
> reservations" about them. But after the European Parliament approved
> such a requirement for Internet, telephone and VoIP providers, top
> administration officials began talking about the practice more
> favorably.
> After Gonzales left the Justice Department, the political will for
> data retention legislation seemed to ebb for a time, but then FBI
> Director Robert Mueller resumed lobbying efforts last spring.
> This tends to be a bipartisan sentiment: Attorney General Eric Holder,
> a Democrat, said in 1999 that "certain data must be retained by ISPs
> for reasonable periods of time so that it can be accessible to law
> enforcement." Rep. John Conyers, the Democratic chairman of the House
> Judiciary Committee, said that FBI proposals for data retention
> legislation "would be most welcome."
> Smith, who sponsored the House version of the Internet Safety Act, had
> previously introduced a one-year requirement as part of a
> law-and-order agenda in 2007.
> A 1996 federal law called the Electronic Communication Transactional
> Records Act regulates data preservation. It requires Internet
> providers to retain any "record" in their possession for 90 days "upon
> the request of a governmental entity."
> Because Internet addresses remain a relatively scarce commodity, ISPs
> tend to allocate them to customers from a pool based on whether a
> computer is in use at the time. (Two standard techniques used are the
> Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol and Point-to-Point Protocol over
> Ethernet.)
> In addition, Internet providers are required by another federal law to
> report child pornography sightings to the National Center for Missing
> and Exploited Children, which is in turn charged with forwarding that
> report to the appropriate police agency.
> The Internet Safety Act is broader than just data retention. Other
> portions add criminal penalties to other child pornography-related
> offenses, increase penalties for sexual exploitation of minors, and
> give the FBI an extra $30 million for the "Innocent Images National
> Initiativ

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Dan wrote:
> So the local coffee shop is up to the task of supplying forensic
> evidence in criminal trials.

excellent point; coffee shops serve customers, not gather intel on them.
Further, an unethical employee can use that data for his/ her own mischief.
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