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FBI Responds To ACLU GPS Tracking Complaint 146

Posted by samzenpus
from the for-your-eyes-only dept.
Nerdolicious writes "Ars Technica reports that the ACLU has received a response from the FBI after a formal legal complaint was filed to release documents related to warrantless GPS tracking data. But, as you can see from the two memos the ACLU posted to its website, they have unsurprisingly been redacted to uselessness, consisting almost entirely of large black blocks covering full pages."
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FBI Responds To ACLU GPS Tracking Complaint

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  • Wrong topic (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 17, 2013 @09:17AM (#42615555)

    This is filed under "Privacy". I feel if would have been more appropriately filed under "Censorship".

  • Re:This is wrong. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by fyngyrz (762201) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @09:18AM (#42615563) Homepage Journal

    Inform your congressman.

    Please. That's so naive.

  • Re:Wrong topic (Score:5, Insightful)

    by fyngyrz (762201) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @09:20AM (#42615573) Homepage Journal

    It should be filed under "heinous government fuckery."

    Unfortunately, in the US government, it's filed under "we'll do whatever we want, to whomever we want, and if you complain, we've got a list we'll put you on."

  • More like (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ArchieBunker (132337) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @09:24AM (#42615593) Homepage

    Donate millions of dollars to your congressman. Then they'll really be working for you.

  • Re:This is wrong. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 17, 2013 @09:27AM (#42615621)

    Inform your congressman.

    Please. That's so naive.

    You're right. The real way to change a broken system is to participate in juvenile one-upmanship on Slashdot. That'll show 'em.

  • Re:Wrong topic (Score:4, Insightful)

    by L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @09:42AM (#42615713)

    we've got a list we'll put you on.

    Sounds good! Plenty of other countries to vacation to :)

  • Re:This is wrong. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 17, 2013 @09:50AM (#42615765)

    Congress doesn't run the executive agencies. Go to them if you want new legislation passed, or old legislation repealed. Go to the Judicial branch if you want to do something about them violating existing law.

  • by drinkypoo (153816) <martin.espinoza@gmail.com> on Thursday January 17, 2013 @10:05AM (#42615877) Homepage Journal

    I'm going to guess its something like: "If we reveal our policies, then criminals will know our policies and figure out ways around them or loopholes to avoid them".

    Close. "If we reveal our policies, then the citizens whose behavior we are criminalizing will be aware of our attack on their liberties before it is too late."

  • by Sarten-X (1102295) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @10:51AM (#42616287) Homepage

    It's also the kind of thinking that's been demonstrated to be true repeatedly over the past few millenia.

    The phrase "loose lips sink ships" was used to remind WWII soldiers and families that enemies could infer sensitive information (like ship itineraries) from casual conversation (like Cousin Joe getting leave for Christmas). Today, America's enemies aren't nations - they're more often underground organizations of people (including American citizens) who disregard American laws.

    In computer security, we find it perfectly understandable that phishers will collect certain bits of public information (addresses, names, preferences) then use that information later to execute the actual scam (such as getting Amazon to resend products for free). Why is it so hard to believe that others could do similar assembly and use the established procedures against the FBI? Perhaps exploiting a weakness in the procedure to generate fake exculpatory evidence? Even a trivial procedural note like "GPS reception was poor in <standard position>, so we moved the tracker to <somewhere else>" could be easily turned into a list of places to check (or parts to swap) before using a vehicle.

    The expectation that the enemy will use all information they can get doesn't apply only to "believers" or "people in the system". It should apply to everyone with any interest in security. Yes, it'd be nice if the FBI had better oversight with an interest in preserving public freedom, but the make-everything-public ACLU isn't going to be able to provide that. All the ACLU will ever get is 90%-redacted memos. Any organization that is trusted by the FBI to provide such oversight without releasing sensitive information won't be trusted by the gub'mint-hating public.

  • Re:This is wrong. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 17, 2013 @10:55AM (#42616323)
    Congress doesn't run the agencies, but they do fund them. Holding their purse strings is effectively the same thing as running them.
  • by silentcoder (1241496) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @11:00AM (#42616359) Homepage

    > Today, America's enemies aren't nations - they're more often underground organizations of people (including American citizens) who disregard American laws.

    And these people, citizens or not, still have rights. If you can't enforce the law without violating those rights - then you need to change the law. The are not a country at war with you and cannot be treated like enemy combatants.

    But if you meant "terrists" instead of "criminals" then your case is even WEAKER. You have about a 95% higher risk of dying from SUICIDE than from a terrorist attack.
    You, personally, is a MUCH higher threat to your safety.
    So in this case you are sacrificing essential liberty for NON-EXISTENT temporary safety, to paraphrase Ben Franklin.

    tl;dr - There is no freedom more essential than the right to KNOW the laws you live under.

  • Re:This is wrong. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by kilfarsnar (561956) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @11:18AM (#42616533)

    Congress doesn't run the executive agencies. Go to them if you want new legislation passed, or old legislation repealed. Go to the Judicial branch if you want to do something about them violating existing law.

    Seems that's what the ACLU did. And we see how far it has gotten them so far.

  • Re:This is wrong. (Score:0, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 17, 2013 @11:29AM (#42616653)

    What the FBI does is wrong.
    And they know it, that is why they hide it.

    Inform your congressman.

    Oh please grow up will you? If youre going to post something atleast be able to give example, talk about it or something. Just dont make up some lazy half assed and generic kneejerk reaction comment and run off. You sound like some ignorant hippie that has nothing to say but repeat "the corporations and governments are bad man" over and over again with no intelligent argument at all.

  • Re:This is wrong. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Hatta (162192) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @11:51AM (#42616949) Journal

    The only way to become a congressperson is to sell out to the very interests you seek to destroy by becoming a congress person.

  • Re:This is wrong. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by t4ng* (1092951) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @02:45PM (#42618881)

    Yeah, we can play this game all day, but let's remember that we live in a democracy, so this is really all on us. The only reason you have to sell out and act like a dickhole to be in Congress is because that's what voters are demanding right now.

    I would argue that voters are demanding this right now because they have been convinced to do so by a vast array of corporate control media that selectively suppresses some news, grossly distorts other news, and gives a far-reaching public stage to people that are clearly either uninformed idiots, completely unhinged mental cases, or corporate shills.

    Go back to pre-1980's rules about about media outlet ownership and equal-time, and you might stand a chance of cutting the head off the snake.

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