Immunity for Telecoms

The Bush Administration is seeking to shield telecom’s that participated in its illegal wiretapping scheme from privacy law suits being brought forward against them. However, they do not want to name the dozen or so companies involved. AP reports:

The vaguely worded proposal would shield any person who allegedly provided information, infrastructure or “any other form of assistance” to the intelligence agencies after the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks. It covers any classified communications activity intended to protect the country from terrorism.

The article also hints at the scope of the surveillance, not just covering telephone calls but email traffic as well:

Conventional wisdom has long been that the bulk of the surveillance operations — groundbreaking because they lacked judicial oversight — involved primarily telephone calls. However, officials say the Bush administration’s program frequently went after e-mail and other Internet traffic, which al-Qaida has embraced as a key means of communication.

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