*NEWS*CINGULAR SUES PRIVATE EYE/HP LEAKS

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*NEWS*CINGULAR SUES PRIVATE EYE/HP LEAKS

 user 2006-10-10 at 11:12:00 am Views: 85
  • #16669

    Cingular Sues Private Eye in HP Leaks
    ATLANTA
    OCT 06 – Cingular Wireless LLC, the nation’s largest cell phone
    provider, on Friday sued a private eye caught up in the scandal over
    the Hewlett-Packard Co. leak investigation, seeking to make him pay for
    allegedly obtaining customer call records under false pretenses.The
    Atlanta-based company said in federal court papers it wants Charles
    Kelly, his firm CAS Agency Inc. and any of its agents to return all
    Cingular customer information they may have, give up any profits they
    made for getting the data and pay unspecified damages for their
    conduct.The complaint, which follows a similar suit filed late Thursday
    by Verizon Wireless, also seeks an injunction against CAS, which is
    based in Carrolton, Ga.Kelly could not immediately be reached for
    comment Friday. No phone listings for Kelly or CAS could be found
    through directory assistance, an Internet search or a Georgia state Web
    site on corporation registrations.Citing testimony before a House
    committee, Cingular said the defendants or their agents improperly
    obtained the customer call records of CNET news.com reporter Dawn
    Kawamoto and provided the information to HP as part of the computer
    maker’s probe to root out corporate leaks to the media.Cingular said
    that in an attempt to circumvent its safeguards, the defendants or
    their agents used several different types of ruses to gain the customer
    information. This included posing as customers seeking information
    about their accounts, posing as fellow employees needing access to an
    account or using customers’ online passwords without their consent, the
    suit said.The practice of obtaining customer call records by posing as
    the customer is known as “pretexting.”Kelly was among five private eyes
    summoned to appear before a congressional hearing to explain their
    alleged actions.HP officials are accused of conducting an
    investigation, designed to trace a boardroom leak, that used a network
    of private detectives who impersonated the targeted individuals to
    obtain their phone records, snooped through their trash and physically
    spied on them. The probe targeted HP directors, employees and
    journalists.Besides the inquiry in Congress, federal and California
    prosecutors are investigating whether company insiders or outside
    investigators broke the law. California Attorney General Bill Lockyer
    has said he has enough evidence to indict HP insiders and
    contractors.cingular is jointly owned by AT&T Inc. and BellSouth
    Corp., while Verizon Wireless is a partnership between Verizon
    Communications Inc. and Vodafone Group PLC.