Governmental agencies have been searching seemingly without end for ways to pry into the personal communications of computer users in America. Congressional approval and cooperation from Internet companies could be an eternity away, of course, but the FBI might be able to bypass that entirely by taking the matter into their own hands. At the Quantico, Virginia headquarters of the DCAC, federal workers are believed to be already hard at work on projects that will put FBI spies into the Internet, snooping on unsuspecting American’s Skype calls, instant messages and everything else carried out with a mouse and keyboard.
As McCullagh reports, the DCAC doesn’t have a website, let alone press releases detailing their plans. The sparse information that is available, however, paints a scary picture of what the FBI has in mind — and what they aim to accomplish with an $8 million handout from Congress.
In the US Drug Enforcement Agency’s budget request with the Department of Justice for the next fiscal year, the report’s authors write that “the recently established Department-wide Domestic Communications Assistance Center (DCAC)” is being “led by the FBI to address the growing technological gap between law enforcement’s electronic surveillance capabilities and the number and variety of communications devices available to the public.”