The article fails to specify whether it is referring to Verizon (formerly Bell Atlantic), which has been selling off its landline holdings piece by piece and not too long ago having problems with its employee unions, or Verizon Wireless, which is a joint venture between Verizon and Vodafone.
Perhaps it's both, if they are using "Verizon" as an umbrella term and referring to landline and mobile subscribers, considering that Verizon Wireless does not omit the word "wireless" from its marketing materials and landline phones do not broadcast serial numbers
I'd say it borders on sloppy reporting, but BBC being British, i'll give them a pass on it this time. Incomplete news is better than no news, especially on a subject like this...
Such metadata includes telephone numbers
, calling card numbers, the serial numbers of phones
used and the time and duration of calls. It does not include the content of a call or the callers' addresses or financial information.
As a VZW customer, i disgusted with this kind of surveillance, and don't quite buy the "counter-terrorism" excuse. The various extremists intending to attack the country from the inside aren't likely to be multi-year contract subscribers on VZW or to use a landline for calls (even dumber). Same goes for Mexican drug cartels. They all prefer the disposable prepaid phones, and most of those run off of AT&T or T-Mobile.
Unfortunately, it sounds like the real target is law-abiding citizens, like journalists and various whistleblowers.
It makes me wonder whether Barrett Brown or his mother were in fact Verizon customers...
We Spoke to Barrett Brown from Prison | VICE United States