AT&T Helps Feds Track Suspected Drug Dealers With Phone Call Data [Photo]
Who knew?! We sure didnt! NY Daily News reports; “The feds have partnered with AT&T to reach out and touch alleged drug dealers.
The phone company has been helping the Drug Enforcement Agency’s “Hemisphere Project” by providing easy access to its massive database, which contains 26 years of information and tracks 4 billion calls a day, records show.
The government also pays AT&T to embed employees alongside DEA agents and investigators in locations around the country. The employees can quickly supply the investigators with subpoenaed phone data and help them track down dealers, the report said, adding that the project has been highly successful in following suspects who frequently switch cellphones.
Some of the subpoenas are issued by the DEA itself — it’s one of a handful of government agencies that can issue its own “administrative subpoenas.” The sought-after information — which can include the location of callers — “can be returned via email within an hour,” Hemisphere training documents crow.
“It’s not a surveillance program,” the source said of Hemisphere, but a mechanism to speed up access to information about specific phone numbers.
“We’re trying to keep up with the drug dealers,” the source said.”
Source: NY Daily News