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Letter: Personal communication is not secure

4:23 PM, Jun. 18, 2013  |  Comments
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Editor: In 1995, records of local to local phone calls, made by my wife, were used against me in state court by my employer, Verizon. Yes, the same types of records, including points of origination and termination, dates and times of origin, duration and completion, that are now of issue involving the National Security Agency (NSA) eavesdropping programs.

Though somewhat surprised that these records were allowed in evidence, I knew then that private communications were not really private. The recent revelations by Edward Snowden are but confirmation of this fact and should be of no surprise to anyone.

My case was based on false charges brought by a third party and had absolutely nothing to do with security issues whatsoever. Judge Ralph Adam Fine ruled in my favor.

In 2010, my wife and I visited a friend in Canada but our return was uncertain. The U.S. Border Patrol checked our passports, asked numerous questions about where we stayed, where we went, whom we visited, their names and telephone numbers and what we talked about. I began to wonder what country I was in. Eventually we were allowed reentry.

Our only explanation for the harassment is that our friend has numerous VIP contacts and makes many international calls. This puts him on a watch list and therefore us, also.

Anyone who thinks that telephone or Internet communications are secure and confidential has to be dreaming. Another step in our incremental loss of freedoms.

John Bandow

Stratford

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