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Thread: Police Are Using Phone Tracking as a Routine Tool

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    Police Are Using Phone Tracking as a Routine Tool

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/01/us...=MYWAY&ei=5065


    By ERIC LICHTBLAU

    Published: March 31, 2012

    WASHINGTON — Law enforcement tracking of cellphones, once the province mainly of federal agents, has become a powerful and widely used surveillance tool for local police officials, with hundreds of departments, large and small, often using it aggressively with little or no court oversight, documents show.
    A GPS tracker. The Supreme Court recently ruled that such a device placed on a suspect's car was an unreasonable search.
    The practice has become big business for cellphone companies, too, with a handful of carriers marketing a catalog of “surveillance fees” to police departments to determine a suspect’s location, trace phone calls and texts or provide other services. Some departments log dozens of traces a month for both emergencies and routine investigations.

    With cellphones ubiquitous, the police call phone tracing a valuable weapon in emergencies like child abductions and suicide calls and investigations in drug cases and murders. One police training manual describes cellphones as “the virtual biographer of our daily activities,” providing a hunting ground for learning contacts and travels.

    But civil liberties advocates say the wider use of cell tracking raises legal and constitutional questions, particularly when the police act without judicial orders. While many departments require warrants to use phone tracking in nonemergencies, others claim broad discretion to get the records on their own, according to 5,500 pages of internal records obtained by the American Civil Liberties Union from 205 police departments nationwide.
    Looks to me that police departments are getting mighty bold, using lame excuses of safety and public good to justify their searching through people's phones. This is going to get out of hand if their aren't taken to court over it.
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    Re: Police Are Using Phone Tracking as a Routine Tool

    It seems many civil liberties have fallen on the sword of safety.
    We went from sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me to safe spaces.

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    Re: Police Are Using Phone Tracking as a Routine Tool

    Quote Originally Posted by Blue_State View Post
    It seems many civil liberties have fallen on the sword of safety.
    While that's true, it seems Republicans and conservatives didn't have a problem with all this during the Bush years. I remember many conservatives posting "Well, if you haven't done anything wrong, you don't have anything to worry about.".

    That type of mentality has just rolled over again and again. I doubt we will see much change even if a GOP is elected. Once you give the power to authorities to do this type of thing, they either won't give it up or they will ask for more.

    I'll agree it's sad, but this seed was planted over a decade ago and is blossoming into what we see now.

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    Re: Police Are Using Phone Tracking as a Routine Tool

    Quote Originally Posted by American View Post
    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/01/us...=MYWAY&ei=5065



    Looks to me that police departments are getting mighty bold, using lame excuses of safety and public good to justify their searching through people's phones. This is going to get out of hand if their aren't taken to court over it.
    Of course they do. Government assumes control of new technology, it doesn't ask permission to use it. How do you think they even start to believe that putting GPS on cars is OK? They have the tech and they can and at worst they say "it will be tied up in court and in the interm we can use this", blah.

    You ever wonder what the NSA is doing? Lots worse than the cops. We don't live in a controlled Republic, we are falling fast down the hole of fascism.
    You know the time is right to take control, we gotta take offense against the status quo

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    Re: Police Are Using Phone Tracking as a Routine Tool

    Quote Originally Posted by TheNextEra View Post
    While that's true, it seems Republicans and conservatives didn't have a problem with all this during the Bush years. I remember many conservatives posting "Well, if you haven't done anything wrong, you don't have anything to worry about.".

    That type of mentality has just rolled over again and again. I doubt we will see much change even if a GOP is elected. Once you give the power to authorities to do this type of thing, they either won't give it up or they will ask for more.

    I'll agree it's sad, but this seed was planted over a decade ago and is blossoming into what we see now.
    The question is whether it is reversable.
    "Human kindness has never weakened the stamina or softened the fiber of a free people. A nation does not have to be cruel to be tough."
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    Re: Police Are Using Phone Tracking as a Routine Tool

    Quote Originally Posted by Jredbaron96 View Post
    The question is whether it is reversable.
    It is reversable, however, it's unlikely to happen. For it to happen, there needs to be a populace that holds it's politicians accountable for what they do. That's not happening now, because hyperpartisan politics is the norm.

    People would rather keep voting in "their side", rather than letting the other side come in and change things. all the while "their side" continues the norm of eroding freedoms for the sake of security. And if the other side goes up against a candidate on that issue, the incumbant just says "See, look they want us to be weak so we get attacked by <insert scary group here>".

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    Re: Police Are Using Phone Tracking as a Routine Tool

    Quote Originally Posted by TheNextEra View Post
    While that's true, it seems Republicans and conservatives didn't have a problem with all this during the Bush years. I remember many conservatives posting "Well, if you haven't done anything wrong, you don't have anything to worry about.".
    That type of mentality has just rolled over again and again. I doubt we will see much change even if a GOP is elected. Once you give the power to authorities to do this type of thing, they either won't give it up or they will ask for more.

    I'll agree it's sad, but this seed was planted over a decade ago and is blossoming into what we see now.
    You'll never see a post like that from me. The wiretaps were from foreign phone calls of known terrorists, and I believe that had to get some kind of permission. I think this is different enough to be concerned about.
    "He who does not think himself worth saving from poverty and ignorance by his own efforts, will hardly be thought worth the efforts of anybody else." -- Frederick Douglass, Self-Made Men (1872)
    "Fly-over" country voted, and The Donald is now POTUS.

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    Re: Police Are Using Phone Tracking as a Routine Tool

    Quote Originally Posted by TheNextEra View Post
    It is reversable, however, it's unlikely to happen. For it to happen, there needs to be a populace that holds it's politicians accountable for what they do. That's not happening now, because hyperpartisan politics is the norm.

    People would rather keep voting in "their side", rather than letting the other side come in and change things. all the while "their side" continues the norm of eroding freedoms for the sake of security. And if the other side goes up against a candidate on that issue, the incumbant just says "See, look they want us to be weak so we get attacked by <insert scary group here>".
    That's because they believe the otherside is the one eroding liberties.
    "He who does not think himself worth saving from poverty and ignorance by his own efforts, will hardly be thought worth the efforts of anybody else." -- Frederick Douglass, Self-Made Men (1872)
    "Fly-over" country voted, and The Donald is now POTUS.

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    Re: Police Are Using Phone Tracking as a Routine Tool

    Quote Originally Posted by American View Post
    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/01/us...=MYWAY&ei=5065



    Looks to me that police departments are getting mighty bold, using lame excuses of safety and public good to justify their searching through people's phones. This is going to get out of hand if their aren't taken to court over it.
    But will they use it as a 'lost phone' finding tool when you can't lay your hands on it?
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    Re: Police Are Using Phone Tracking as a Routine Tool

    Quote Originally Posted by Aunt Spiker View Post
    But will they use it as a 'lost phone' finding tool when you can't lay your hands on it?
    Yes, another free service from you local LE.
    "He who does not think himself worth saving from poverty and ignorance by his own efforts, will hardly be thought worth the efforts of anybody else." -- Frederick Douglass, Self-Made Men (1872)
    "Fly-over" country voted, and The Donald is now POTUS.

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