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Secret Surveillance at an All-Time High

Two annual reports recently released by federal agencies show that surveillance activity conducted by the United States government has continued to rise dramatically since the 9/11 terrorist attacks, with use of investigative powers under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act again at an all-time high.

A coalition of consumer and civil liberties groups joined EPIC in filing comments with the Federal Communications Commission that urge the agency to adopt stronger protections for phone records. Phone records (and other types of personal information held by businesses) are vulnerable to "pretexting," a practice where an individual impersonates another person, employs false pretenses, or otherwise uses trickery to obtain information. In 2005, EPIC identified 40 websites offering to obtain phone records through pretexting, and filed a petition with the FCC to require stronger rules for protecting phone records

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