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The Podium

Thursday, February 17

Tapping the Net

By Brad

Declan McCullagh of CNet reports that the FBI is gearing up to make a major push for Internet wiretapping powers:

FBI general counsel Valerie Caproni will outline what the bureau is calling the “Going Dark” problem, meaning that police can be thwarted when conducting court-authorized eavesdropping because Internet companies aren’t required to build in backdoors in advance, or because technology doesn’t permit it.

Any solution, according to a copy of Caproni’s prepared comments obtained by CNET, should include a way for police armed with wiretap orders to conduct surveillance of “Web-based e-mail, social networking sites, and peer-to-peer communications technology.”

With online privacy an ever-increasing concern, this could quickly turn into a big fight in Congress. Stay tuned…

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