Friday, January 11, 2008

Homeland Security - if the Bill is Paid

Just when you thought you’d seen it all, along come the Telecoms and the FBI to re-create an undercover wiretapping scandal worthy of Mr. Bean. OK, so you are a right winger and you approve of the telecom companies allowing the FBI to eavesdrop on US citizens regardless of whether a warrant is in place or not. Or maybe you’re a left winger and don’t approve of this practice and think the telecoms shouldn’t let the FBI install wiretaps.

The fact is: they do. Until, that is, the FBI neglects to pay its phone bills and then, lo and behold, homeland security, anti-terrorism and the wire-tapping that allegedly goes with it becomes moot as reported by The Raw Story:

Telephone companies have cut off FBI wiretaps used to eavesdrop on suspected criminals because of the bureau's repeated failures to pay phone bills on time.

A Justice Department audit released Thursday blamed the lost connections on the FBI's lax oversight of money used in undercover investigations. In one office alone, unpaid costs for wiretaps from one phone company totaled $66,000.

Who would have thunk it? The FBI of course denies that the service interruptions have caused any breach of security.

What the devil are the wiretaps being used for then, if, when they stop functioning, there’s no danger anyway?

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