We've assembled some of the top legal issues in the communications field that have appeared in the Legal Technology Center over the course of the past year, and we offer them up so you can relive the highs and lows that were 2006. From "pretexting," to foreign surveillance wiretap legislation, to VOIP services, and more, let the below articles get you up to speed.
The statistics on electronic waste (e-waste) are alarming. E-waste is now the fastest-growing part of the municipal waste stream, according to the EPA. Computers seem so efficient and environmentally-friendly, but there are hidden dangers associated with them once they become e-waste.
Boardroom Hijinks May Lead to Serious Liability
Two days ago, on September 12, Hewlett-Packard's ("HP") non-executive Chair, Patricia Dunn, resigned -- amid news stories claiming she used subterfuge to gain access to the phone records of board members and journalists, in an effort to root out a suspected boardroom snitch.
Why The "Compromise" Foreign Surveillance Wiretap Legislation Pending in Congress Is No Compromise
New legislation that would rewrite the rules governing foreign surveillance wiretaps is making its way through the Senate Judiciary Committee. The legislation's content is predictable: The GOP-controlled Congress is giving the President essentially what he wants, by approving his NSA wiretapping program.
The Recent Revelations About the NSA's Access to Our Phone Records: The Laws that Were Probably Broken, and the Likely Consequences
With the National Security Agency's warrantless wiretapping program still highly controversial, just last week, USA Today revealed that President Bush has authorized yet another secret surveillance program. Under this program, the NSA - apparently without the benefit of any court order -- has been compiling millions of Americans' phone records into a giant database.
The Treasury Department's Secret Monitoring of International Funds Transfers
In late June, the New York Times revealed that the Treasury Department and the CIA had been engaged in a secret surveillance program. Through the covert Terrorist Finance Tracking Program ("TFTP"), the Administration has reportedly monitored thousands of international funds transfers. The goal was to trace terrorist finances, in an effort to stop money from reaching terrorist groups.
FCC Inconsistency Benefits Law Enforcement In VoIP/Broadband Decision
Recently, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit addressed a controversial 2005 order of the Federal Communications Commission in American Council on Education v. FCC, a decision which denied a petition for review of an FCC ruling that providers of broadband Internet access and voice over Internet protocol ("VoIP") services are regulable as "telecommunications carriers" under the Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act ("CALEA").