Before Total Information Awareness, before MATRIX, before Secure Flight, and before CAPPS II, the government data-diving project that gave civil libertarians fits was the FBI's Carnivore. Used in tandem with other Bureau tools, Carnivore could monitor a target's Internet traffic, piecing together e-mail messages and web-surfing history.But Carnivore has been abandoned, according to Security Focus' Kevin Poulsen. And it's not because the Feds have decided that it's no longer cool to peek into a person's inbox. Rather, Carnivore has been outpaced, it appears. The Bureau is now using "commercially-available products to conduct Internet surveillance" instead.THERE'S MORE: "If you're among the millions of Americans who took airline flights in the months before the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, the FBI probably knows about it - and possibly where you stayed, whom you traveled with, what credit card you used and even whether you ordered a kosher meal."
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