The US Republican-led Senate failed to block the Federal Bureau of Investigation against expanded hacking powers.
Democratic Senator Ron Wyden attempted three times to delay the changes, which will take effect on Thursday and allow U.S. judges will be able to issue search warrants that give the FBI the authority to remotely access computers in any jurisdiction, potentially even overseas. His efforts were blocked by Senator John Cornyn of Texas, the Senate’s second-ranking Republican.
The changes will allow judges to issue warrants in cases when a suspect uses anonymizing technology to conceal the location of his or her computer or for an investigation into a network of hacked or infected computers, such as a botnet.
Magistrate judges can currently only order searches within the jurisdiction of their court, which is typically limited to a few counties.
The government will have “unprecedented authority to hack into Americans’ personal phones, computers and other devices,” said Wyden.
Wyden then claimed that by doing so it was troubling in the hands of the incoming Trump administration who he says has “openly said he wants the power to hack his political opponents the same way Russia does.”
Actually, Trump didn’t say that. What he did was call on Russia to hack Clinton’s email to find “the 30,000 emails that are missing” from the personal server she used during her time as secretary of state.
It should be noted that a warrant must be secured, which is in keeping with the Fourth Amendment. However, one must question just how far reaching this power will be and whether or not the jurisdictions being affected are within the jurisdiction of the central government.
For instance, if this is a local or state matter, then the local or state governments need to handle those things not anyone at the federal level.
U.S. Assistant Attorney General Leslie Caldwell argued that benefits outweighed any potential for “unintended harm.”
“The possibility of such harm must be balanced against the very real and ongoing harms perpetrated by criminals – such as hackers, who continue to harm the security and invade the privacy of Americans through an ongoing botnet, or pedophiles who openly and brazenly discuss their plans to sexually assault children,” Caldwell wrote.
Some judges have recently dismissed evidence brought in a sweeping FBI child pornography sting, claiming the warrants used to hack suspects’ computers exceeded their jurisdiction.
That’s interesting. So, now the issue is brought up about the FBI’s warrants exceeded their jurisdictions, which is what I point to. Before you go and blast me over pointing this out, keep in mind that the FBI ran a pedophile website for weeks, which clearly violated federal law, in order to arrest those who viewed what they were disseminating through Operation Pacifier.
What I want to know is when will the American people demand that each FBI agent involved in these illegal activities have their own computers searched for child pornography and whether or not any of them just might be involved in #Pizzagate?
I’m sure if those questions are brought up, the claims of “conspiracy theorists” and “tin foil hats” will be brandished about in an attempt to silence the truth to protect the guilty.
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