Surveillance Policies & Issues
CALEA compliance is a cost of doing business for service providers. They are not able to directly recover all of their costs, but regardless, they must comply. Most switch manufacturers face the same situation. By law, they outfit their switches with software that allows for lawful intercept. However, in most cases this software application has to be paid for by their customers. Some service providers believe that the mere purchase of a software app makes them CALEA compliant. Others think they can save money utilizing another technical solution that makes them compliant. Yet there is more to CALEA compliance than just a technical solution.
Over the last decade, the needs of law enforcement for electronic surveillance to investigate and apprehend criminals have risen significantly, leading to a 150 percent rise in the number of court orders for lawful intercepts. The spike in court orders has, in turn, placed increased pressure on communications service providers to ensure they are in compliance with the Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act (CALEA).