Last week I shared the story of how mobile phone providers have responded to at least 1.3 million government requests for user data last year alone, reports the New York Times' Eric Lichtblau. The figures reflect data released to Congressman Ed Markey by AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, MetroPCS, Cricket, U.S. Cellular, Tracfone and C Spire.
The 1.3 million figure is an estimate; the total number of requests is likely significantly higher because so-called "emergency requests" are made informally and are therefore difficult to track. Furthermore, T-Mobile refused to provide Congress with figures, adding another likely hundreds of thousands of requests -- though it did report that about half of all requests the company receives are oversight-free subpoenas, and that the number of requests it fields has risen steadily each year.
Is it me, or is it starting to feel more and more like a police state??