Your own Echelon for $110

John at Americablog has a scary story about how your landline or cellphone records may be being reviewed right now. And, no, it’s not by the NSA, the FBI, the CIA or any other government agency. Instead, it may be your wife trying to find out if you’ve been calling your girlfriend. Or it may be your boss checking to see if you’re talking to any other companies about a job. Maybe its your mother wondering if you’ve been calling Planned Parenthood.

It’s simple, really. All you need is the person’s cellphone number and $110, then you go to and within a couple of hours — a day maybe — you can have a list of all calls made from or to that number. It doesn’t seem to be illegal, or else those entities which would pursue it if it was illegal — police, FBI — would be pursuing, right?

Turns out according to a story in the Chicago Sun-Times, that the FBI and the Chicago Police Department know all about it and have even warned their officers that their records may be available to people who shouldn’t see them. And what kind of people might those be? Hmmm… who might want to know the people a cop or a reporter is talking to?

And, if George Bush wanted to, here’s yet another way he could have legally obtained phone information on US citizens. If the FISA courts are too slow, is very fast.


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