EavesDropping before the roof falls in

Published Categorized as technology

looking at the COMMUNICATIONS (RETENTION OF DATA) BILL 2009 is not possible for the small host to determine are they an ISP or not.

What I can tell is that it is only interested in Emails & Internet Telephony (on the Internet side of things). So a method to store the raw log file of the MTA and a method to restore certain data on request of an order becomes the duty of an ISP. Fork raw data logs to the Amazon cloud? with a grep like search with date range? Oooh, if the cloud is stateless (without country borders) can the data be farmed off the island? it is a EU directive but I think the national legislation (this bill) wants the data kept in the state, or, the bill  only has jurisdiction to data stored  in the state, so would a workaround be to have email services in a non EU country that doesn’t have such laws?

Because of scale and due to the fact that hosting is not the primary function of my company, the cost implication of this bill becoming law could be greater than the margin we make on hosting, particularly when it comes to service time/man hours in fulfilling a request order. Comparing to a current data commissioners liaison re UCE it could be a costly overhead the state is placing on the small host / ISP, forcing some providers out of the business or to use the workaround above, to force some data services outside of the state.

But why are we being subjected to such monitoring, the authorities tell us that it is necessary to monitor/investigate (after the event) the activities of real bad people like terrorists.

Well the Minister pushing this Bill in Dermot Ahern TD. A few of his neighbours in the North East were the subject of an inquiry into the bombing in Omagh. So remember, the authorities use the info gathered in these cases to stop bad things happening! or did they? Did GCHQ monitor the alleged bombers voice calls on the day of the bombing? Yes, did they stop the atrocity? NO!

So when politicians suggest strong laws to catch the bad folk that use our email servers and phone systems, remember that they don’t bother to use these powers to save lives.

On February 2nd 2009 I wrote this review of certain evidence to the Gibson Report into the handling of intercept evidence on the day of the Omagh bombing.

What would stop a would-be criminal using a pre paid unregistered mobile phone to carry out illegal activities? nothing. Why retain data on the entire population in order to NOT stop the baddies? because there is another purpose for the retention. Keep the general non criminal population in fear of the reach of the state into personal data or is the state playing catch up with the really big internet companies who through our own volunteering of personal data sharing, know more about us that the state does..?

Ireland’s dumbest criminals are being locked up on the call tracing evidence provided by mobile phone companies. All because these criminal folk carry personal tracking devices, the ubiquitous mobile phone. As Irish police take their own radio network private and digital (after 25 years in the clear) so too will the clever criminals. They will dispense with personal public tracking and circumvent all the technology this bill is supposed to catch them on, leaving Private Joe very much Joe Public when it comes to all our data privacy concerns.

Categorized as technology