08 Nov Texas National Guard May Have Eavesdropped on Cellphone Communications via Surveillance Planes
A state lawmaker recently raised privacy and constitutional due-process concerns regarding the Texas National Guard’s use of “dirt boxes” which can intercept a mobile phone user’s communications and other private data.
According to contract documents obtained by the media, the National Guard apparently spent around $373,000 to install DRT 1301C portable receiver systems on their surveillance aircraft. Also called cell-site simulators, these dirt boxes mimic cellphone towers such that it can be used to listen in to calls and pin a user’s location.
Privacy advocates have blasted the use of dirt boxes, calling it a “digital dragnet”, since it will also inevitably intercept the communications of innocent users even if it is used to target just one user.
Source: Texas Observer