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Government Privacy United States Your Rights Online

The Heavily Redacted World of the FBI's Tracking Technology Unit (muckrock.com) 53

v3rgEz writes: If you search the FBI website for details the Tracking Technology Unit, nothing shows up: They have no official home page, their leadership is not mentioned, and the few public mentions of the group seem to be at court appearances where members explain that information they gather cannot be released publicly. But a recent FOIA request for information on the FBI's shuttered warrantless GPS tracking program shed a little more light on this secretive unit, whose motto is "Factum Non Verba": Deeds, not Words.
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The Heavily Redacted World of the FBI's Tracking Technology Unit

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  • by NotDrWho ( 3543773 ) on Tuesday January 19, 2016 @01:17PM (#51330271)

    Do they have the gold-lame spandex suits and cool motorcycles too?

    Deeds Not Words [allaboutduncan.com]

  • Better motto (Score:5, Insightful)

    by russotto ( 537200 ) on Tuesday January 19, 2016 @01:38PM (#51330433) Journal

    How about "Mendacium non veritum"... "Lies, not truth".

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 19, 2016 @01:43PM (#51330473)

    Very little of what the government does should be secret, all of that should be confined to foreign intelligence operations, and no domestic law enforcement agency should be operating in the shadows. You took an oath, you traitorous pieces of shit.

    • by Phusion ( 58405 )

      yeah guy, you tell 'em!

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Coren22 ( 1625475 )

      What proof do you have that they aren't getting warrants for their tracking activities? It is quite an assumption that you are making that they somehow are ignoring the constitution; which is something the FBI is forbidden from doing.

      Since the tracking has been in court cases, and none of the court cases were thrown out for illegal data gathering methods, more likely you are the one who doesn't know what they are talking about here.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        It's right in the summary, "a recent FOIA request for information on the FBI's shuttered warrantless GPS tracking program."

        It's in the first sentence of the article, "In 2012, the FBI's warrantless GPS tracking system went dark - after a Supreme Court ruling forbid the practice."

        They were not using warrants. It's the entire point of the story.

      • by rtb61 ( 674572 )

        Any action of government that would affect the vote of a citizen should be made public prior to elections. A elected government representative somewhere and at some time signed off on this and their position should be up for review based upon it. As an empathic example, clearly the other commenter had severe issues with this and it clearly would affect their vote and as such under electoral law it should have been made public. The core of any democratic constitution is maintaining that democracy and democr

        • If all that is the case, you should be able to point to it somewhere in the constitution. As it is, the government has many programs that are considered Secret and Top Secret, and the whole point of those programs is that they need to remain that way as it would cause grave harm to the US for them to be commonly known about. You are essentially saying that the government isn't allowed to run secret programs, because that "hides" the information from the electorate. I encourage you to tell your representa

          • by rtb61 ( 674572 )

            Talk about off track. I did not say all programs need to be public just those programs that would affect the vote and as such the government is not allowed to spend money on electioneering by keeping secret those things that would affect the democracy. Right there in pretty much every countries constitution, the government is not allowed to use it's offices for electioneering purposes, elected officials are not allowed to use tax payer funds to stay in power, that is a sure sign of the end of democracy. Ba

            • In that case, maybe you misunderstood what this is about? This is about a program that tracks the vehicles of those under FBI investigation to attempt to find their associates involved in the crime. This program has nothing to do with electioneering, and its effect on the election is the same as any other program the government doesn't publically talk about.

              This program doesn't help anyone stay in power, so the whole premise that it should be public knowledge makes no logical sense just as secret and top

  • The [redacted] works hand-in-hand with other government agencies, including [redacted], to provide real-time [redacted] to [redacted] threats both on- and off-line. Because of the growing threats of [redacted] in our increasingly globalized society, the [redacted] performs large-scale [redacted] to support the functionality needed to [redacted] [redacted]. If you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear, [redacted].
  • by ThatsNotPudding ( 1045640 ) on Tuesday January 19, 2016 @02:28PM (#51330861)

    But a recent FOIA request for information on the FBI's shuttered warrantless GPS tracking program shed a little more light on this secretive unit, whose motto is "Factum Non Verba": Deeds, not Words.

    Always a bad sign when the Federales whip up a slogan for themselves - doubly so if it's in fucking Latin. A little pomp and circumstance to round off the sharp edges of the police state.

    • by AHuxley ( 892839 )
      Re "a slogan for themselves":
      "Why the US Launched a Spy Rocket With an Earth-Sucking Octopus On It" (December 7, 2013)
      http://motherboard.vice.com/bl... [vice.com]
      All part of the very long term collect it all domestic dragnet surveillance and the use of insignia badges with Latin phrases.
  • by Bearhouse ( 1034238 ) on Tuesday January 19, 2016 @03:16PM (#51331283)

    There were no words - since their "deeds" appeared (from TFA) to consist of redacting over 300 pages of what he did request, (which was pretty innocuous and non-specific, BTW; he just asked what TOWNS the program had been active in...)
    They then fill-in with a bunch of boilerplate to look like they had actually complied with the request.
    Bad-faith bureaucratic stonewalling at its finest.

    The main payload in the article is that the dude infers that a program that was declared illegal was simply repackaged and buried deeper, hence the desire to not give away too many details since they'll probably being doing the same old....

    I'm happy to pay my taxes to live in a state of law, since democracy cannot exist without it.
    But I'm increasingly of the impression that I'm getting short changed on both.

    • by zlives ( 2009072 )

      hey the Supreme is working on making taxes(dues) on unions not required....

      "We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union... blah blah"

  • by Tokolosh ( 1256448 ) on Tuesday January 19, 2016 @04:27PM (#51331849)

    "I often wonder whether we do not rest our hopes too much upon constitutions, upon laws and upon courts. These are false hopes. Liberty lies in the hearts of men and women; when it dies there, no constitution, no law, no court can save it; no constitution, no law, no court can even do much to help it."

    US judge and judicial philosopher Learned Hand (1872-1961).

    • by AHuxley ( 892839 )
      Its really what a good defence lawyer can ask about and find was done from a standard POTS warrant or beacon copy and paste tracking.
      ie the gov is doing NSA collect it all on domestic hops of friends friends from one persons court paperwork for a cell phone or tracking one SUV.
      A good lawyer should be able to see what else was built from one case. How was so much information found from one court order that might not even be for their client...
      Methods and what a court allowed. Beacon was for gps? Why t
  • At other times, cooling their heels in a jail cell contemplating the judges contempt order for refusing to release information.

    That's a world I could happily live in.

  • by spiritplumber ( 1944222 ) on Tuesday January 19, 2016 @09:52PM (#51333737) Homepage
    "Acta Non Verba", not "Factum Non Verba". Geez.

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