Sunday, March 02, 2008

Telecom Indemnity Deals?

By Cernig

Kevin Drum poses an interesting question today - do telecom companies have indemnity agreements with the Bush administration which would mean the government would cover any losses from lawsuits over surveillance measures? It would explain by the telecom companies themselves seem so low-key and entirely unbothered by the prospect of lawsuits and leave the Bush administration's real reason for wanting an immunity as the one we've always suspected - keeping the actual extent of surveaillance secret.

Kevin quotes a commenter of his, who is an attorney with considerable experience dealing with wiretapping cases.
"The general counsels and legal departments of telcos are extremely accomplished and always protect their company's interests meticulously. They have been dealing with wiretapping and surveillance agreements with the government and law enforcement for over seven decades, this was not a matter of first impression to them; and in difficult and unique cases, I have never seen them not insist on indemnification. Never."
Such deals would, of course, be classified.

Kevin writes that "Indemnification might be a good subject for some enterprising national security journalist to start prying into." Oh, definitely.

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