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Phone Tapping? That's NOTHING. Here's the real story...

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posted on May, 13 2006 @ 05:04 AM
Greg Palast is an excellent investigative reporter. He's so good that the UK and US governments both regard him as a thorn in their sides.

In this article, he reveals the datamining activities of a company called ChoicePoint, which those of us with an eye for this sort of thing - and a memory that goes back further than last week - will remember as the company that purged thousands of (mainly black) voters from the registers in Florida.

When Greg Palast confronted the company's spokesman on the matter with a secret memo detailing that the voter purges should contain no safeguards to purge as many voters as possible, the latter went and hid in his office!

Now, ChoicePoint are back in the unwelcome glare of the media spotlight. And why?

...the snooping into your phone bill is just the snout of the pig of a strange, lucrative link-up between the Administration's Homeland Security spy network and private companies operating beyond the reach of the laws meant to protect us from our government. You can call it the privatization of the FBI -- though it is better described as the creation of a private KGB.

They are paid to keep an eye on you -- because the FBI can't. For the government to collect this stuff is against the law unless you're suspected of a crime. (The law in question is the Constitution.) But ChoicePoint can collect if for "commercial" purchases -- and under the Bush Administration's suspect reading of the Patriot Act -- our domestic spying apparatchiks can then BUY the info from ChoicePoint.

...And now ChoicePoint and George Bush want your blood. Forget your phone bill. ChoicePoint, a sickened executive of the company told us in confidence, "hope[s] to build a database of DNA samples from every person in the United States ...linked to all the other information held by CP [ChoicePoint]" from medical to voting records.

And ChoicePoint lied about that too. The company publicly denied they gave DNA to the Feds -- but then told our investigator, pretending to seek work, that ChoicePoint was "the number one" provider of DNA info to the FBI.

"And that scares the hell out of me," said the executive (who has since left the company), because ChoicePoint gets it WRONG so often. We are not contracting out our Homeland Security to James Bond here. It's more like Austin Powers, Inc. Besides the 97% error rate in finding Florida "felons," Illinois State Police fired the company after discovering ChoicePoint had produced test "results" on rape case evidence ... that didn't exist. And ChoicePoint just got hit with the largest fine in Federal Trade Commission history for letting identity thieves purchase 145,000 credit card records.

So it's a Kafaesque combination - sinister and inept. (Remind you of anyone?) Plus in the article, GP details how the bigger story escaped the NYT because it didn't put together the details of three seperate stories it was running.

posted on May, 13 2006 @ 08:53 AM
Good find Rich 23. I ahve followed Mr. Palast for a long time, I love his articles and he finds things out that nobody else does. He has a team of researchers helping him to dig up information that the gov't wants hidden. And I certainly remember Choicepoint from 2000 election. This is truly scary - these guys are good at circumventing the Constitution.

Wonder how they plan to gather the DNA.

posted on May, 13 2006 @ 11:28 AM

Originally posted by forestlady
these guys are good at circumventing the Constitution.

Wonder how they plan to gather the DNA.

Didn't think much of the following story when I first read it...Now I'm not so secure.
Nor is any of us, I think.

Seems the US Center for Disease Control wants to make it policy that everyone be tested for HIV as part of their routine physical exams.

Perfect source/cover for DNA collection right there, no?

posted on May, 13 2006 @ 12:06 PM
I'm in the data mining business myself. Although my work is related to marketing and only uses legal data this whole issue scares the guano out of me. Forget the fact that CP sounds as though they are some mixture of incompetent /over-their-heads / dishonest, the mere fact that 'our' government would do this and moreover that the majority of people think it's ok is staggering. Of course we did vote this guy into office now didn't we? I guess we're getting what we deserve.

posted on May, 13 2006 @ 05:56 PM
Choice Point, Converse Infosys, Odigo, all of these have been doing this very same thing for years, Converse and Odigo are located in Tel Aviv Israel. Odigo is the instant messenger system that sent several Employees at the WTC complex a warning not to go to work that day.

posted on May, 13 2006 @ 08:58 PM
Thank you and this is a good find! Of course there is more behind it that meets the eye. There always is.

Seems the US Center for Disease Control wants to make it policy that everyone be tested for HIV as part of their routine physical exams.

I can go to my doctor and i can assure you he will not test me, unless he lies to me and tells me he is looking for something else. I hope he's got tons of malpractice insurance.

posted on May, 14 2006 @ 12:55 AM
Geez I sure hope my country doesn't start this
. Down with Big Brother!!!

posted on May, 14 2006 @ 05:26 AM
It's so obvious when you think about it, though... the answer is simply to get Jeb to run for President

posted on Jun, 11 2006 @ 12:11 AM
".... And ChoicePoint lied about that too. The company publicly denied they gave DNA to the Feds -- but then told our investigator, pretending to seek work, that ChoicePoint was "the number one" provider of DNA info to the FBI."

REPLY: They publically denied this, but told someone who "WAS NOT EVEN AN EMPLOYEE, YET", that this is what they did? Sounds like crap-ola to me.

posted on Jun, 11 2006 @ 02:22 AM
Seeing as no one ever reads my posts I dragged this over here.
Could this have something to do with the VA loosing all those files?

I did a google search on this company and here below are just a few of the links I came across. Really makes you wonder what real long term goal is in all this, I mean besides the almight dollar.

The Times and USA Today have Missed the Bigger Story -- Again
By Greg Palast


Who ARE these guys selling George Bush a piece of you?

ChoicePoint's board has more Republicans than a Palm Beach country club. It was funded, and its board stocked, by such Republican sugar daddies as billionaires Bernie Marcus and Ken Langone -- even after Langone was charged by the Securities Exchange Commission with abuse of inside information.
But it won't stop, despite Republican senators shedding big crocodile tears about "surveillance" of innocent Americans. That's because FEAR is a lucrative business -- not just for ChoicePoint, but for firms such as, Syntech,Sybase and Lockheed-Martin -- each of which has provided lucrative posts or profits to connected Republicans including former Total Information Awareness chief John Poindexter (Syntech), Marvin Bush (Sybase) and Lynn Cheney (Lockheed-Martin).

ChoicePoint: More ID theft warnings

ID company says criminals able to obtain almost 140,000 names, addresses and other information.
February 17, 2005: 1:10 PM EST

NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - ChoicePoint Inc., a national provider of identification and credential verification services, says it will send an additional 110,000 statements to people informing them of possible identity theft after a group of well-organized criminals was able to obtain personal information on almost 140,000 consumers through the company.

ChoicePoint CEO grilled by Congress

Data broker backs some new regulations, Smith says

Members of Congress grilled ChoicePoint CEO Derek Smith on Tuesday, demanding the company do more to protect customers in the wake of the massive information leak at the database giant.

"The incident has caused us to go through some serious soul searching," Smith said, testifying at a hearing held by the House Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade, and Consumer Protection.

ChoicePoint revealed last month that thieves had accessed the personal information of 145,000 U.S. consumers from the firm

ChoicePoint settles FTC charges, pays $15 million

The FTC said in a statement Thursday that ChoicePoint has agreed to pay $10 million in civil penalties and $5 million in consumer redress to settle charges that its security and record-handling procedures violated consumers' privacy rights and federal laws. The settlement requires that ChoicePoint implement new procedures to ensure it provides consumer reports only to legitimate businesses for lawful purposes, to establish and maintain a comprehensive information security program; and to obtain audits by an independent third-party security professional every other year until 2026, the FTC said.

ChoicePoint Settles Data Security Breach Charges; to Pay $10 Million in Civil Penalties, $5 Million for Consumer Redress

At Least 800 Cases of Identity Theft Arose From Company’s Data Breach

“The message to ChoicePoint and others should be clear: Consumers’ private data must be protected from thieves,” said Deborah Platt Majoras, Chairman of the FTC. “Data security is critical to consumers, and protecting it is a priority for the FTC, as it should be to every business in America.”

ChoicePoint is a publicly traded company based in suburban Atlanta. It obtains and sells to more than 50,000 businesses the personal information of consumers, including their names, Social Security numbers, birth dates, employment information, and credit histories.

Choicepoint Inc. Company Profile CPS United States Market Size

Business Description
Choicepoint Inc.. The Group's principal activity is to provide identification and credential verification services for making smarter decisions. It operates through four segments: Insurance services include information products and services used in the underwriting and claim processes by property and casualty insurers. Business services include employment background screenings, drug testing administration services, public filing searches, vital record services and mortgage fraud credentialing services. Government services include DNA identification services, background screenings, drug testing administration services and data visualization. Marketing Services include data, analytics, teleservices, database and campaign management services. On 04-Jan-2005, it acquired i2 Limited, Magnify Inc. in April 2005 and EzGov, Inc. in May 2005.

Form 10-Q for CHOICEPOINT INC. Quarterly Report


Quarterly Report

In the first quarter of 2006, total revenue increased 4% over the first quarter of 2005 driven by continued strong growth in the Insurance Services segment offsetting weaker performances primarily in the Government Services and Marketing Services segments. Total revenue increased 4% in the first quarter of 2005 over the first quarter of 2004. First quarter consolidated internal revenue, which represents core revenue less incremental revenue from acquisitions, increased 3.2% for 2006 over 2005 (excluding $2.3 million of incremental acquisition revenue) and increased 7.1% for the first quarter of 2005 compared to 2004 (excluding incremental acquisition revenue of $33.8 million in 2005)

posted on Jun, 11 2006 @ 06:48 AM
Great links, Sauron. Thanks for your efforts... I've not been tending this thread but it's nice that these things come around and people remember them.

It is astonishing that these companies can have this data and treat it with such carelessness, verging on contempt.

Eventually, the pressures for people to be chipped are going to rise and rise, as the details of identity become more and more widely distributed and accessible.

How can anyone like the way this is gonig?

posted on Jun, 11 2006 @ 11:59 AM
Lets take this down to a local level for most everyone. Do you use a discount card offered by most every grocery chain/store? Do you think they keep your information secret? Ditto to the big three credit-checking companies. Stuff like this has been going on for decades, and is nothing new, 'nor does it pertain only to one political party or another.
Have you ever had to give a thumbprint to cash a check? The government gets that, too, as do law enforcement agencies. The last administration started that as a way, supposedly, to check up on deadbeat dads.... a good thing; but it, too, I'm sure is used in other ways.

posted on Jun, 11 2006 @ 03:14 PM
god this company knows no limits on unethical practice!

How in the world can a company like this continue to operate?
All these companies ensure our privacy but lie through their teeth and we let it continue(thanks politricksters)

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