Drew Stephens

Off the Hook - 23 April 2008

This is the synopsis of Off The Hook that aired on 23 April 2008. The show runs live on WBAI at 7pm on Wednesdays. Call in at 212.209.2900 or send letters to oth@2600.com. The show is also available as a high-quality podcast.

In the studio: Emmanuel, Mike, Redbird, Redhackt, Not Kevin, Lexicon, Mojo from California, Al & Zach from North Carolina
On the phone: Bernie S in Philadelphia

There wasn’t a show last week because the show was pre-empted and there isn’t one next week; WBAI is having a Report to the Listener show during OTH’s time slot so listen in to hear about running a radio station.

Bernie S relates a Supreme Court decision concerning a man who was stopped for a traffic violation, arrested and, as part of the arrest, searched. The crux of the issue is that the reason for which the man was stopped was not an arrest able offense, thereby making such detainment illegal. As such, the state appeals court ruled that the pursuant search was also illegal a stance which was overturned by the United States Supreme Court, making the evidence collected during such a search admissible in court. In the case of Virginia v. Moore, the inventory search performed after the illegal arrest found illegal drugs and the evidence was used to charge Moore with crimes pursuant to those findings.

Another case concerning searches performed by border patrol for people entering the United States. The ruling made by the Ninth Circuit court states that border patrol agents need no suspicion to search persons entering the country at a border control station. Though the authority to search sans-probable cause has always been in place for border agents, the question of whether search laptops was also legal had been in question. Though it is still legal to encrypt data and refuse to divulge the encryption key, the concern of law enforcement officers simply seizing the device as evidence and delaying its return for months or years is brought up.

Bernie S brought up a very interesting combination of the above mentioned decisions wherein a law enforcement officer can illegally arrest you, such as in Virginia v. Moore, they may then search you and subsequently charge crimes based upon what the search finds.

The Australian government is exploring the introduction of laws allowing employers to read all of their employee’s company email in order to prevent cyber terrorism. In the United States, this is already the case since the owner of the network and computers, the employer, is the de-facto owner of all data upon them.

A council in England has employed laws meant to fight terrorism to put families under surveillance in order to ferret out fraudulent school placement applications.

As reported by Jane’s Police Review, London’s metropolitan police department is planning to equip all of their officers with microchips that will track their presence.

Israel says that Facebook is a threat to national security because soldiers and government employees post pictures of potentially classified material and equipment. Redhackt commiserates the desire to post pictures of oneself with interesting military hardware.

This weeks data loss comes from a New York Presbyterrian hospital that lost 40,000 records of patient names and social security numbers. Unsurprisingly, a spokeswoman fr the hospital says that there is nothing to show that the information has been misused.

Lexicon talks of the Not Our Concern Network Operations Center that will be in place at The Last Hope which he summarizes as a coat check for servers. Just reserve a spot and you can hook your box up to a big tube for the duration of the con. The con will also host a radio station for its entire duration. Named Radio Statler after the previous name of the hotel, the radio station is seeking people to help run it during the con weekend. If you want to help out with the con, or know about it, check out HOPE.net.