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CALEA. Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act October 20, 2005. A brief history of wiretapping. 1960’s : Wiretapping was easy; one phone company; basic technology 1980’s: Deregulation means multiple carriers; cell phones; analog to digital transition begins

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Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act

October 20, 2005

a brief history of wiretapping
A brief history of wiretapping

1960’s : Wiretapping was easy; one phone company; basic technology

1980’s: Deregulation means multiple carriers; cell phones; analog to digital transition begins

1994: CALEA passed with several compromises; specifically no Internet; no private networks

2004: VoIP: Wiretapping isn’t getting any easier…

federal state local and fisa wiretap orders for 2004
Federal, State, Local and FISA Wiretap Orders for 2004
  • 1,712 regular court
  • 1,754 under FISA
what is calea
What is CALEA?

CALEA is the Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act. It requires providers of commercial voice services to engineer their networks in such a way as to assist law enforcement agencies in executing wiretap orders.

Until August 5, 2005 that is…..

calea new report and order
CALEA: New Report and Order

On August 5, 2005, in response to a request by law enforcement, the FCC voted to extend CALEA to include facilities-based Internet service providers.

Facilities-based Internet service providers are defined as: "entities that provide transmission or switching over their own facilities between the end user and the Internet Service Provider."

private networks are still exempt but
Private Networks are still exempt, but….

Private Networks are now defined as networks that do not allow access to the “public” Internet or the public switched telephone network (PSTN).

If your network provides access to the “public” Internet you are no longer exempt as a private network.

arguments for against extending calea to isps
Law Enforcement

The Internet is increasingly the communication of choice for criminal activity

Legal intercepts need to be easier and less expensive for LE

An “exempt” system is a magnet for criminal activity

Education and Libraries

Congress should decide not the FCC or DoJ

LE has sufficient access now

Cost to comply can’t be justified

Will slow innovation

Arguments for/against extending CALEA to ISPs
legal justification substantial replacement provision
Legal Justification: Substantial Replacement Provision

The term “Telecommunications Carrier” includes a person or entity engaged in providing wire or electronic communication switching or transmission service to the extent that the Commission finds that such service is a replacement for a substantial portion of the local telephone exchange service and that it is in the public interest …..

(Section 102. 8B(ii) CALEA)

substantial replacements
Substantial Replacements

1. Broadband Internet access substantially replaces Dial-up (a portion of the local exchange service)

2. Interconnected VoIP substantially replaces POTS

3. Therefore, Broadband and Interconnected VoIP providers are “Telecommunications Providers”.

two part decision
Two Part Decision
  • Part #1: Decided: CALEA does apply to ISPs and all facilities-based Internet service providers are covered. Full compliance is required in 18 months..
  • Part #2: Still to be decided: What will be required (standards of compliance) and will there be an “special cases” allowed (i.e. small rural providers or education and research networks).
what is educause doing
What is EDUCAUSE doing?
  • April 2004 in response to the original petition by LE, EDUCAUSE formed a coalition of 16 education and library associations and filed comments.
  • EDUCAUSE has been actively engaged in talks with Congress, the FCC, and the DoJ ever since.
  • We continue to hold out hope for a “special case” compromise that will mitigate the expense of changing our equipment.
current proposal some examples
Current Proposal: Some examples
  • Single point-of-contact on every campus
  • Standard procedures established
  • 24x7 assistance available
  • Personnel trained in procedural, legal and technical demands of assisting legal intercepts.
  • Some gateway equipment would be replaced, but only under the normal replacement cycle
  • Law enforcement will want more concessions
  • Our community will have to seriously consider the options
calea a campus perspective
CALEA:A Campus Perspective
  • What do we know for sure?
    • Not much!
    • But sooner or later, some regulations requiring additional activity by universities in lawful surveillance seems likely
  • Cost to become CALEA compliant could be HUGE!!!
how might a request work
How might a request work

Access Function

Telecommunication Service Provider

(Switch collects Lawful Intercept data)

Service Provider Administration

(Turn on Lawful Intercept feature of switch)

Delivery Function

Lawful Authorization

(Securely deliver information to LEA)

(Order generated)

Law Enforcement Administration

Collection Function

Law Enforcement

some vocabulary ref tia j std 025 b
Some Vocabulary (ref. TIA J-STD-025-B)
  • Access Function(s) (provided by campus)
    • Provides unobtrusive intercept access points to intercept subject’s communications and passes to Delivery Function
  • Delivery Function (provided by campus)
    • Responsible to delivering intercepted communications to the Law Enforcement Agency (LEA) Collection Function
  • Collection function (provided by LEA)
    • Responsible for collecting lawfully authorizedcommunications
calea faq

Thanks to Al Gidari and Wendy Wigen for assistance!

Disclaimer: Current understanding – subject to change quickly

  • Who pays for what?
    • Campus must pay for equipment, systems and people to perform Service Provider Administration, Access Function and Delivery Function
    • Law Enforcement pays for leased lines (if necessary) to campus and Collection function
calea faq1
  • What do I need to buy for my campus to be CALEA-compliant?
    • Don’t know - detailed specifications not yet available
    • Current CALEA regulations seem to require significant equipment upgrades or replacements
  • When will FCC clarify requirements so we can start upgrading network?
    • Not known
calea faq2
  • Might CALEA regulations related to the Internet be declared invalid?
    • Yes, but universities will still need to support surveillance requests in the future
  • Is the university responsible for decrypting or decompressing message content?
    • No, not unless the university did the compressing/encrypting and has keys to decrypt
calea faq3
  • Is more than just Voice over IP covered by CALEA?
    • Yes – all communications will need to be forwarded, and (as of now) the VoIP packets will need to be decoded if the university provides the VoIP service, otherwise decoding responsibility is unclear
calea faq4
  • What might a LEA ask for?
    • All communications associated with an IP address or jack
    • All communications associated with a person!!!
      • Wired – specific location
      • Wired – any authenticated access!!!
      • Wireless!!!
calea faq5
  • Is surveillance of intra-campus traffic necessary (e.g., between two computers hooked to the same card on the same ethernet switch)?
    • Yes……if the switch has the potential of passing traffic forward to the public Internet
calea faq6
  • Do the LEAs want to be able to turn on and perform surveillance remotely?
    • University personnel would be turning on, maintaining and turning off the wiretap, but the data would be sent to the designated LEA facility
  • It seems like some of the CALEA requirements will be very difficult (or impossible) to implement with commonly deployed systems and technology. Sound right?
    • Yes
calea faq7
  • Do campuses need to do anything beyond network upgrades to satisfy CALEA?
    • Yes - universities will need do training and background checks, have 7/24 point of contact for LEAs, create and document processes for interfacing with LEAs and file documentation attesting to CALEA compliance
  • Any other impacts?
    • Is E911 now extended to university VoIP systems?
calea a campus perspective1
CALEA:A Campus Perspective

Higher Ed. has, and will continue to, support lawful surveillance, but effective, less costly alternatives should be explored

calea faq8
  • Where can I find out more?
    • Educause
    • AskCALEA
    • FCC
    • Selected vendor information
      • “Cisco Service Independent Intercept Architecture” (sign on required to access on Cisco web site)
      • RFC 3924




some more vocabulary ref tia j std 025 b
Some More Vocabulary (ref. TIA J-STD-025-B)
  • Call Content Channel:
    • Logical link to LEA Delivery Function carrying call content
  • Call Detail Channel
    • Logical link to LEA Delivery Function carrying call-identifying information