Fueled by the ease of online commerce, snoops are on the trail of other personal information, too. One of the hottest markets: records of phone calls, especially from cell phones. A tool long used by law enforcement and private investigators to help locate criminals or debt-skippers, phone records are a part of the sea of personal data routinely bought and sold online. Legal experts say many of the methods for acquiring such information are illegal, but they receive scant attention from authorities.
Online Data Gets Personal, Washington Post, July 8, 2005.