Re: H.R. 514

Ross A. Finlayson (
Wed, 12 May 1999 18:56:35 -0400

Well, this has some implications. It would seem unconstitutional. Here is the issue, there is never a reason for anyone to listen to anyone else's conversation unless they are directly involved in the conversation or it is a public broadcast.

Law enforcement should be able to get access to telephone conversations and data transfer if they have a warrant, but not otherwise. To observe any telephone conversation besides one's own and those that one has a privilege to observe given by the people in a conversation, is a violation of rights. Any time there becomes government recording, there is to be notification.

When talking to service representatives of the phone company, you are notified that the conversation is being recorded and then it is clear. Any other recording is a rights violation.

There is not reason for the equipment actually used to perform wiretaps to not be available to law enforcement, but there should be checks and balances on its use just like any other use of it.

These checks and balances should be available to be publicly monitored. What this would mean is that the prima facie elements of a case would have to be established before any wiretapping. Then, a warrant could be aquired, conventionally, through a judge, then it would be constitutional to wiretap someone. To be actually constitutional, it might be necessary for there to be notification.

Ross Finlayson

Gina Miller wrote:

> Law enforcement agencies are moving to trucked commnication systems and
> radio scanners will incorporate trunk tracking as well. The H.R. 514,
> "Wireless Privacy Enhancement Act of 1999" will make it illegal for
> manufactureres to sell such equipment, or to sell any devices that "convert
> protected paging service transmissions to alphanumeric text." This bill is
> what the Feds are offering to enhance our privacy in lieu of strong
> encryption systems that they would have difficulty cracking. In other words:
> they can listen to us, but we can't listen to them. The bill is currently
> winding its way through Congress and will almost certainly become a law
> unless people make a fuss. You can read the bill at:
> If you're incensed enough to write your representative but forgotten who
> they are go to:
> An anti H.R. site
> Gina "Nanogirl" Miller
> Nanotechnology Industries
> Web Page
> E-mail
> Alternate E-mail
> "The science of nanotechnology, solutions for the future."
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Ross Andrew Finlayson
"C is the speed of light."