Verizon and your “completely private” personal information

USA Today reports that AT&T, Verizon and BellSouth have been handing over to the NSA the phone call records for tens of millions of Americans. The news prompted the following email conversation among some friends of mine this morning:

Max: Nice to hear that one company (Qwest) refused to go along with this. If I could switch my phone service to Qwest, I’d seriously consider it. Unfortunately, they don’t cover NY.

GMB: We [should] all write to Qwest congratulating them for being a good corporate citizen and asking them to bring their services to NYC. You can identify the kind of service you have (wireless, dsl and local/long distance for me) and tell them that as soon as they offer service in the city you will switch to them. And cc the CEO of Verizon.

Matt: When I emailed Verizon to tell them what a disgrace they are, they asked me for my customer password because “Verizon Wireless considers your personal information completely private.”

(Oh, and don’t forget about the warrantless wiretapping program.)

Update: William Gibson (Neuromancer) discusses the revelations at Open Source Radio. You can read a partial transcription at Boing Boing.


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