Daily updates on privacy stories in the news.

« Body Scan Machines to Search London Tube Passengers | Main | Ruling by Dutch Judge Protects Privacy of Online File Swappers »

U.S. Officials Seek Rapid-Wiretap Access to In-Flight Broadband Services

Federal law enforcement officials, fearful that terrorists will exploit emerging in-flight broadband services to remotely activate bombs or coordinate hijackings, are asking regulators for the power to begin eavesdropping on any passenger's internet use within 10 minutes of obtaining court authorization. In addition to seeking the rapid-tap technology, the Justice Department has asked the FCC to require carriers to maintain fine-grained control over their airborne broadband links. This would include the ability to quickly and automatically identify every internet user by name and seat number, remotely cut off a passenger's internet access, cut off all passengers' access without affecting the flight crew's access, or redirect communications to and from the aircraft in the event of a crisis.

Feds Fear Air Broadband Terror, Wired News, July 11, 2005.