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So I bet you didn't know that when it comes to the government spying and you and -- whether it's on the phone or online those companies Verizon AT&T on the others.
They actually charge the government to get access to your records it all adds up to millions in -- You and me the taxpayer.
Here to tells all about -- -- Who reported the story for the AT and I was shocked.
An outraged by your story and you know it takes a lot to shock and outrage me these days and all the things the government is doing but but this what I had no idea and we are actually paying for the government to spy on us through our tax dollars had to find this out.
-- -- Well it -- thanks for having me Melissa you know basically when I started to look into this we found that every single company out there with the exception of FaceBook pretty much charges the government to have access to your data.
And this is gone on sense -- early 1990s when -- person said you know we need to have access to the telephone networks.
To wiretap catch the bad guys.
And the company said you know.
That that cost money that's where business we're in it to make money.
So you're gonna have to help us -- -- some of these costs and that's how it got started.
Defray the costs I like that -- estimated different.
Announced that they're being that they need to -- Brady's costing you look at Verizon did a capitalist and they are charging 775.
Dollars for the first month.
And 500 dollars a month from their odd to keep the whole thing going.
Isn't that and it's worth a lot less they have a 325.
Dollar activation -- -- like that it's like you're getting cable.
You're just logging into someone's you know phone records and then ten dollars a day.
From there on out in order to keep it going you've got other guys that are much cheaper -- mean US cellular the only charge -- -- fifty dollars.
Wonder how they come up with these numbers they say anything about how they come up with -- numbers -- not similar.
Well that's -- it -- That Edwards -- links came out the companies aren't saying a whole heck of a lot again I talk to mostly telecommunications lobbyists people who work with these -- -- carriers.
And it really as a reporter I was looking for an industry standard OK I might make sense right are so so what is the standard and they are wildly different.
I -- think it -- to be fair that you have to -- -- a couple a couple of things one has spent.
These companies are all using different technologies there are using different networks it might require different.
Facilitate a wiretap.
For example and a lot of people have looked at the -- I don't know that this amounts to all that much money it's a lot of money to people like you -- -- but maybe not to everybody else you know what it is.
It makes them look -- -- they said you know the police -- authorities come to last and they want these records and they say it's you know to prevent terror attack since a week screened over.
Because we're forced to and maybe it's our duty as American companies.
And they -- at least hide behind the shield of trying to -- -- be good when they're charging for it.
It becomes dirty here it's like when -- cop in my neighborhood you know would come to me it's did you see that accident.
Maybe I did but I need twenty bucks to tell you what right now and it just doesn't make it feel dirty that they are taking taxpayer money.
-- you know I think.
Here's the flip side to this which is what -- these companies didn't charge anything.
Right now we have all of these web based Internet tech companies Google FaceBook.
That really -- charging a whole heck of a lot are you more comfortable with them overcharging.
To have access your data and perhaps discouraging gratuitous requests are would you rather have -- just give everything to the government for.
-- I don't need you there in a really bad position I don't know I yeah I don't see any of you because I think that when they charge for it they look greedy and at least if they don't charger -- and they resist that -- at least.
Trying to preserve my privacy.
As opposed to making a buck off selling my privacy and great story and thank you so much for coming on.
Thank you --
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