Cops’ wiretap tech frayed
CALGARY — Alberta’s top cop says antiquated wiretap technology in the modern-day crime-fighting realm is hampering police investigations.
Western provincial solicitor generals and justice ministers recently met in Saskatoon and joined forces to pressure the feds to bolster laws to remove technological barriers which often give organized criminals an upper hand.
“The technological infrastructure is there, it is just a matter of getting the legislation in place — we believe we can be more effective,” Alberta Solicitor General Fred Lindsay told Sun Media.
“If (criminals) have a communication device and we can’t wiretap, it puts us at a disadvantage.”
Among a list of demands by the ministers is upgrading Criminal Code lawful access provisions to improve police access to information, be it on computer or cellphone — technology which post-dates the creation of current laws.
One recurrent issue is an inability for police to quickly and adequately investigate criminals by tapping into their use of cellphones.
As it is, criminals can buy prepaid, non-traceable cellphones to use in drug deals or other nefarious activities and register them under any name they want, leaving no identifiers which could help police investigations.
There is also no legislation to deal with encryption technology on cellphones.