internet

Jack Reed: Time to look at balance between security, privacy

June 13th, 2013 at 10:45 am by under Nesi's Notes, On the Main Site

The Washington Post’s E.J. Dionne has a column today about the debate over surveillance, and one of the voices in the piece is that of U.S. Sen. Jack Reed (who also expressed concerns to WPRI last week):

That we’re now more inclined to question the national security state should not surprise anyone. “In the period immediately after the attacks of 9/11, the American people were willing to give the government broad power to keep them safe,” Sen. Jack Reed (D-R.I.), one of Congress’s most thoughtful voices on national security, said in an interview. “Now, more than a decade later, it’s entirely appropriate that Americans are asking about the balance between security and privacy.”

Reed believes that we still need extensive surveillance programs. But he was also in the minority last December in supporting an earlier version of the Merkley proposal on the FISA court decisions. He also favored another amendment, proposed by Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), that would have required the director of national intelligence to submit a report to Congress and the public on the impact of the revised FISA law on the privacy of U.S. citizens.

This is a rare issue that divides Reed and his junior colleague, Sheldon Whitehouse.

Reed voted yes but Whitehouse voted no on the two measures from December that Dionne references – the Merkley amendment to disclose legal justification for surveillance and the Wyden amendment to require a privacy report. As I wrote in Saturday’s column, Whitehouse’s views may relate to his past service on the Intelligence Committee, his time in law enforcement and his general trust in the federal government.

• Related: Sen. Whitehouse defends Obama on surveillance programs (June 7)


Sen. Whitehouse defends Obama on surveillance programs

June 7th, 2013 at 12:55 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – U.S. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse defended the Obama administration’s use of surveillance in terrorism investigations on Friday, breaking with fellow progressive lawmakers who have harshly criticized the president’s tactics this week.

Read the rest of this story »


Watch Executive Suite: Beacon 2.0, RI Biz Plan winners

June 2nd, 2013 at 5:00 am by under Nesi's Notes, On the Main Site


Whitehouse softens tone on Protect IP Act; voted postponed

January 20th, 2012 at 9:35 am by under Nesi's Notes, On the Main Site

U.S. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, the only member of Rhode Island’s congressional delegation who supports controversial anti-piracy legislation, said Thursday night he’s open to changing the bill.

“I’ve heard from many Rhode Islanders who are concerned about this bill and I share their desire to preserve the free and open nature of the Internet,” Whitehouse, who is in the Philippines with other senators, told WPRI.com in a statement. “I remain concerned about the effect of online piracy on jobs and consumer safety, and continue to support legislation to address this problem.”

“That said,” he continued, “I look forward to working with my colleagues to consider further improvements to the bill before a final vote is held – whether that happens next week or at a later date.” Whitehouse’s colleagues – Jack Reed, Jim Langevin and David Cicilline – say they also support the goal of cracking down on Internet piracy.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid announced Friday morning that he has decided to postpone Tuesday’s scheduled vote on the Senate anti-piracy bill, the Protect IP Act, in the hopes of finding “a compromise in the coming weeks.” Whitehouse has been a cosponsor of the bill since it was introduced last May.

Politico reported that the anti-piracy bills were “hanging on for dear life Thursday.”

Whitehouse’s Republican challenger, Barry Hinckley, criticized the senator’s support for the bill this week. Christopher McAuliffe, a spokesman for Hinckley, suggested “it makes more sense in light of the over $200,000 in campaign contributions Whitehouse has received from the entertainment industry.” Whitehouse’s allies dismiss that, pointing to his years in law enforcement and his concern with unfair economic competition from abroad.

• Related: Whitehouse bucks Wikipedia, stays sponsor of Protect IP Act (Jan. 18)


Whitehouse bucks Wikipedia, stays sponsor of Protect IP Act

January 18th, 2012 at 10:45 am by under Nesi's Notes, On the Main Site

Google is protesting the two bills

Wikipedia’s blackout hasn’t convinced U.S. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse to drop his support for a controversial bill to beef up regulation of the Internet.

“The PROTECT IP Act is a sensible, bipartisan response to this serious problem,” Whitehouse, D-R.I., told WPRI.com in a statement Wednesday.

The bill would “advance protections for American intellectually property online,” he said. The freshman Senate Judiciary Committee member has been a cosponsor of the legislation since U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., introduced it May 12.

The PROTECT IP Act and its House counterpart, the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), have run into a firestorm of opposition online and been criticized for potentially compromising cybersecurity by lawmakers including Whitehouse’s Rhode Island colleague, Congressman Jim Langevin. Wikipedia and Google are among a host of sites protesting the bills publicly Wednesday.

(more…)


Pioneering liberal blog RIFuture ready to relaunch – and to fight

January 9th, 2012 at 2:06 pm by under Nesi's Notes, On the Main Site

the new Rhode Island's Future

It’s back to the future for Rhode Island’s Future.

The lefty website that was an influential voice of opposition to the Carcieri administration will return to its roots on Wednesday by debuting with a new look and a commitment from 15 contributing writers to reenergize the blog, which fell all but silent last year.

“There is this ephemeral image of Rhode Island being this bastion of liberal policy,” Brian Hull, who bought Rhode Island’s Future in August 2009, told WPRI.com. “Sure, everyone’s a Democrat, but that doesn’t mean everyone’s a liberal. Now RIFuture is coming back to actually have that strong liberal voice that’s been missing.”

With Hull busy as a student at Harvard’s Kennedy School, Rhode Island’s Future became a ghost town in 2011, rarely updated except for occasional scattered posts, some anonymous, and event announcements. It was a far cry from the consistent commentary that marked the site in its heyday under founder Matt Jerzyk or that still happens at Anchor Rising.

(more…)


Langevin alarmed after cyber attacks on U.S. Chamber, Stratfor

December 29th, 2011 at 11:45 am by under Nesi's Notes

In the wake of two high-profile reports of cyber attacks this month – first against the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, then the elite consultancy Stratfor Global Intelligence – Congressman Jim Langevin is renewing his call for Washington to take stronger steps to protect the nation’s digital infrastructure.

The Stratfor attack is particularly concerning, Langevin said. ”When you have a major firm specializing in cybersecurity getting hacked this way, it gives you an idea of how difficult this problem is and how much ground still needs to be covered to better secure our cyber networks,” he said Wednesday in a statement.

“Consider also that many of our most critical industries still aren’t taking cyber threats seriously, even though they do not have the level of expertise that Stratfor does and an attack on them could result in much more serious damage than this incident,” Langevin said. In the past, he’s pointed to electric and water utilities as potential targets.

Rhode Island’s 2nd District congressman has become one of Congress’s leading authorities on digital threats and is cofounder of the Congressional Cybersecurity Caucus. In June he authored an op-ed for The Hill’s website entitled “Preventing a cyber Sept. 11.” (For more on the topic, try David Scharfenberg’s May Providence Phoenix story.)

However, Langevin has yet to weigh in on the top hot-button digital debate roiling Congress these days: the controversial Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) that’s before the House Judiciary Committee. But considering the concerns experts have raised about its potential to compromise cybersecurity, it won’t be surprising if he decides to oppose it.


Segal: On piracy, it’s time Congress finally heeds the geeks

December 23rd, 2011 at 6:00 am by under Nesi's Notes, On the Main Site

By David Segal

The Geeks are ascendant in the halls of Capitol Hill. After a decade or two of know-nothing dominance of political dialogue, people who, you know, know things, are finally having their piece. During a hearing last week on the far-reaching, technically complex Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), Congressman Jason Chaffetz admonished his colleagues to “bring the nerds in and get this right.”

The grassroots activist group Demand Progress – which I helped start about a year ago and has since grown to nearly a million members – has helped lead the fight against SOPA, moving hundreds of thousands of constituent contacts to Congress, organizing activists and techies to fight the bill, and meeting with legislators and folks in the White House to express our members’ concerns.

SOPA would give the government new powers to shut down websites that are accused of facilitating copyright infringement. All of the Web’s best sites – especially the social networks that rely on user-generated content and make the Web fun and politically relevant – could fall victim to such claims.

(more…)


How to get the most out of Twitter without sending a tweet

November 29th, 2011 at 10:15 am by under Nesi's Notes

Like a lot of other journalists these days, I use my Twitter feed as a sort of mini-blog where I post other news items, quick thoughts and new briefs that aren’t worth a full post here.

Lately, I’ve been hearing from more and more people who say they want to use Twitter but aren’t sure they have anything to tweet about. That, I think, misses what makes Twitter valuable – it’s more a brilliant little broadcasting tool than a Facebook-esque social network. “Following” smart people who highlight great writing is what makes Twitter terrific.

Twitter investor Bill Gurley explained that well in a sort of “Twitter 101″ blog post earlier this month:

Twitter suffers from two key misperceptions that need to be resolved before the business can reach its true potential. The first misperception is that Twitter is simply another social network, like Facebook. … Twitter, on the other hand, is a one-to-many information broadcast network. … [O]n Twitter, I can get something out of following Shaquile O’Neil who has no social obligation to follow me back. …

The second, and more critical, Twitter misperception is that you need to tweet, to have something to say and broadcast, for the service to be meaningful to you. For many non-Twitter users, Twitter is an intimidating proposition. “Why would I tweet?,” and “…but I don’t want to tweet” are two common refrains from the non-adopter that highlight this key misperception. But this completely misses the point as to why Twitter has become such an amazingly powerful Internet destination for 100 million others. For the vast majority of Twitter’s next 900 million users, the core usage modality will have very little to do with “tweeting,” and everything to do with “listening” or “hearing.”

Read the rest here - and then why don’t you try his advice out by following me on Twitter?


This post just loaded faster than anywhere else in the country

September 22nd, 2011 at 9:50 am by under Nesi's Notes

Rhode Island often finds itself at the wrong end of state ranking lists – think of unemployment, pension funding, business friendliness. But technologically speaking, you couldn’t be in a better place, the NYT reports (emphasis mine):

Internet speeds in the United States have long trailed those in other countries like South Korea. Downloading videos, games and other big files often takes far longer for Americans than their counterparts across the globe.

In the latest global rankings, the United States remained a slow-poke, placing No. 26 in terms of speediest Internet connections, according to Pando Networks, a company that delivers games and other large online files online for other companies. …

A separate study by Pando Networks earlier this month showed the average speeds in all 50 states. Rhode Island led the list with 894 [kilobytes per second] while Idaho finished last at 318 KBps.

Back when I was at PBN, I did a story on why Rhode Island’s Internet connections are so speedy. Experts gave a lot of the credit to Cox Communications, which invested early and heavily in Rhode Island’s broadband infrastructure; Verizon has done the same more recently.


Chafee-backed digital sales tax bill gains steam in Congress

June 7th, 2011 at 1:20 pm by under Nesi's Notes

Rhode Island got cut off from Amazon.com’s affiliate program two years ago this month after the General Assembly passed a law to force e-retailers to collect sales tax. The measure hasn’t brought in any new revenue, but policymakers have stuck to their guns in saying Internet sellers shouldn’t be exempt from collecting the tax.

Among those who make that argument is Governor Chafee. His controversial 1% sales tax proposal was specifically “designed to sunset upon Congress’s enactment of the proposed Main Street Fairness Act,” which would force Amazon and others to collect state sales tax, he wrote in a March letter to lawmakers. The administration estimates the state will miss out on $70.4 million in tax revenue in 2011-12 for purchases made from Amazon and other “remote sellers.”

The question has always been whether the Main Street Fairness Act actually stands any chance of passing in Congress. Now it looks like the legislation’s prospects may be brightening, Politico’s Michelle Quinn reports:

Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) is expected to step into the escalating Internet sales tax battle as soon as this week with a bill that would allow the 44 states — plus Washington, D.C. — that collect sales taxes to require out-of-state online retailers to pay up.

Durbin’s Main Street Fairness Act is similar to some previous congressional efforts to weigh in on whether states can force online businesses to collect sales taxes on items sold to state residents. But while those efforts failed, this year may be different. …

Similar legislation introduced last year by former Rep. Bill Delahunt (D-Mass.) went nowhere. However, the dynamics in Congress may have changed now that a growing number of states have passed or are considering bills to address the issue and online businesses are faced with the possibility of complying with many different state laws and many different state sales tax rates.

Durbin isn’t just any senator, either. He’s the Majority Whip – the chamber’s No. 2 Democrat – and a close ally of President Obama who hails from the same state, Illinois, which is among those suffering from huge budget deficits and seeking to get Amazon to start collecting sales tax.

The politics of the legislation are interesting, too, since the business community won’t necessarily be united in opposition to it. Brick-and-mortar retailers don’t like how the sales tax exemption gives Amazon and other e-retailers a competitive advantage, and Amazon itself has said it favors a national-level resolution to the issue.

(photo: Amazon.com Inc.)


Want to hook up at Brown U.? New site will help

March 31st, 2011 at 3:20 pm by under Nesi's Notes

Brown students, is the Casual Encounters section of Craigslist not doing it for you? Help is on the way.

A new website called eduHookups – which describes itself as “a free service that allows college and university students to find casual encounters as well as serious relationships” - is expanding from its original base at the University of Chicago to other schools, and apparently students with Brown.edu email addresses will be able to use it starting Monday.

Here’s how The Associated Press described the site:

Some of the smartest and most serious students in the nation go to school at the University of Chicago. Now the campus has a place where an “Awkward Nerd” can find love with a “Bookish Girl” — or at least a fleeting romantic encounter.

It’s called UChicago Hookups, a website whose anonymous creators say they’re trying to change UChicago students’ image as too serious and sexually deprived.

The website says it has more than 300 registered users who have sent more than 1,300 messages in the month it has been in operation. Not bad for a university once described by Inside Edge magazine as the place where “where fun comes to die.”

Not surprisingly, a university spokesman says he has no comment on the site.

Not surprisingly indeed.

(screenshot via HuffPo)


Alas, Delaware tops RI for fastest US Internet speeds

March 29th, 2011 at 7:00 am by under General Talk, Nesi's Notes

So reports Business Insider, using data collected by the New America Foundation’s Measurement Lab.

The average download speed in No. 1 Delaware was 11.36 Mbps, compared with No. 2 Rhode Island’s 9.74 Mbps. We’re a heckuva lot faster than last-place Montana, which came in at 2.57 Mbps, but still in the slow lane compared with South Korea, where the government is promising universal 1 gigabit per second broadband by next year – that’s 1,000 Mbps.

Here’s a map of the Northeast posted by BI – the closer to red, the faster:

This doesn’t really surprise me. Back when I was a tech reporter at PBN, I reported on how Delaware’s broadband pushed Rhode Island’s from the top spot in the 2009 Speed Matters survey.

Experts I spoke with back then gave a big part of the credit for Rhode Island’s speedy connections to Cox Communications, which invested early and heavily in Rhode Island’s broadband infrastructure; Verizon has done the same more recently. The EDC is now making its own push through its Broadband Rhode Island initiative.

(map: Google, via Business Insider)


E. Greenwich firm keeping RIFuture in Web purgatory

March 3rd, 2011 at 7:30 pm by under General Talk

The plot thickens.

As I reported yesterday, liberal blog Rhode Island’s Future lost its home on the Web, rifuture.org, when its domain name expired on Friday. Since then, proprietor Brian Hull has been trying without success to regain control of rifuture.org. (Apparently a previous owner’s contact information was on file with the domain registrar.)

International records show rifuture.org is now in the hands of eNom Inc., a Bellevue, Wash.-based registration service and subsidiary of Demand Media. But it looks like eNom is not the problem.

Stick with me here: According to Hull, rifuture.org was originally registered with a company called RotoHost. RotoHost, in turn, is a reseller for a company called AQDomains.com. But the number Hull was given to get in touch with AQDomains belongs to yet another entity, NameGuard – which, bizarrely enough, has a 401 phone number and an East Greenwich address.

An eNom representative told Hull the only way he can get rifuture.org back is to get in touch with AQDomains via NameGuard. But Hull told me this afternoon he hasn’t received any response to multiple e-mails and phone calls to the various companies over the past three or four days.

“I’m stuck in limbo, because no one’s actually responding to any of the inquiries that I’m sending out there,” Hull said. The exception has been eNom, but its people say their hands are tied until Hull reaches AQDomains/NameGuard/RotoHost.

Thus, almost a week after the site disappeared, it’s still unclear when Rhode Island’s Future will return to the Web. ”I’m extremely frustrated and aggravated at the situation,” Hull said.

NameGuard was incorporated in Rhode Island last April by someone by the name of Simon Vincent, according to records filed with the secretary of state’s office. Its address is listed as 8 Rosedale Rd. in East Greenwich. Perhaps some intrepid Nesi’s Notes reader who lives there can head on over to Rosedale Road and get some answers.

Update: I don’t know the full story yet, but Rhode Island’s Future has returned to the Web as of Friday morning, just under a week after it disappeared. Welcome back.


Secretive Washington company snatches RIFuture.org

March 2nd, 2011 at 11:40 am by under General Talk

What does a company in Bellevue, Wash., want with Rhode Island’s Future?

The pioneering liberal blog disappeared from the Web a few days ago and was replaced with that ubiquitous photo of an attractive young woman with a backpack and a series of links hawking gold and stock options.

International records show the rifuture.org domain name was taken over around 11:30 a.m. Friday by eNom Inc., a Bellevue-based registration service and subsidiary of Demand Media, the infamous content farm that’s one of the major reasons Google is being forced to make large-scale changes to its search engine.

The records say eNom’s ownership of rifuture.org is good until February 2012. [Or does it? See update.]

Brian Hull, who bought Rhode Island’s Future in mid-2009, told me Wednesday he’s working on regaining control of the site’s domain name from eNom and is confident he will succeed, although he doesn’t know how long it will take.

“It will come back,” Hull said. “There’s just some issues I need to try and work out with it.”

This isn’t the first time a popular local blog has temporarily lost its domain name. Anchor Rising went through the same thing a few years ago, though AR contributor Mark Comtois wrote today, ”It appears as if the management over at RIF is having a more difficult time than we did.”

Registration records do not give a live phone number for eNom; phone calls are directed to its Whois Privacy Protection Service division. A call to Whois Privacy Protection’s number led to an answering machine – with a full mailbox – that suggested sending questions to an e-mail address.

I tracked down a phone number for eNom’s office in Bellevue and spoke briefly with a technical support representative there. He was unable to provide further details beyond what the records show, but said he would pass my message along to his supervisor. I’ll update if I get a call back.

Update: Domain Name Wire says the blame for this should fall squarely on Rhode Island’s Future, not eNom:

When you screw up and don’t renew your domain name, just blame the registrar when you talk to the press. …

“Some issues” means Hull needs to pay his bill. Which isn’t mentioned anywhere in the [WPRI.com] article.

It’s also inaccurate that eNom now owns the domain through February 2012. The domain is actually in “Auto Renew Period”, which means the .org registry tacked a year onto the expiration date, not eNom. …

Now, that’s not to say that eNom won’t eventually take this domain and keep it in its portfolio. But don’t blame eNom right now — blame the guy who forgot to renew his domain name.

eNom isn’t the only domain registrar to take attacks like this. The same thing happened when backup service CrashPlan.com forgot to renew its domain at Go Daddy. The company tweeted that Go Daddy “mistakenly removed our root nameserver entry”, “inappropriately took over our DNS”, and did a DNS “hijack”.

Update #2: E. Greenwich firm keeping RIFuture in Web purgatory (March 3)


Visited RhodeIsland.jobs? Monster.com hopes not

January 24th, 2011 at 7:00 am by under General Talk

This is cool. A new network of 40,000 help-wanted websites debuted last week, with a twist: They all combine locations and professions with the suffix “.jobs” – as in RhodeIsland.jobs or Nurses.jobs – and employers can post their job openings on them for free.

The idea is to break the stranglehold of Monster and CareerBuilder over online employment listings, according to The Washington Post. The sites are run by the DirectEmployers Association, a nonprofit backed by big companies including Rhode Island’s CVS Caremark and Citizens Financial.

ICANN, the nonprofit that Clinton administration created in the 1990s to manage the Internet address system, gave DirectEmployers the OK to create the new .jobs sites last month over the objections of the established job sites, which – surprise! – lobbied ICANN to protect their lucrative niche:

For-profit competitors vociferously complained to ICANN that the new leeway would harm their brands and business models. …

“Of all the solutions you hear of, this is the one you think has the most viable solution moving forward. This will have a profound effect on the jobs-list industry,” said a senior recruiting executive for a top Fortune 500 technology company, who was not authorized by his bosses to speak publicly. Monster costs about $400 per job. …

[Randy Goldberg, vice president for recruiting for the Hyatt hotel chain,] said the key advantage of the .jobs sites is that employers can directly post all of their openings for free on one universal network of sites, and can ensure that none of those positions have been filled.

I can see why Monster and CareerBuilder – not to mention their newspaper partners – are worried. The new sites are clean and straightforward, not to mention memorably branded. Try RhodeIsland.jobs or Providence.jobs for yourself and see if you agree. The Post says the sites are currently available for every state and any city with 5,000 or more residents, with more to come.

Not every profession gets its own site, though; I typed in “reporter.jobs” and it didn’t exist. Telling, no?

And here’s what I got when I visited CentralFalls.jobs:

Ouch.


Facebook is now more popular than Google.com

January 1st, 2011 at 3:15 pm by under General Talk

The Web, it is a-changin’.

Facebook passed Google as the United States’ most visited website in 2010, Bloomberg News reports:

Facebook received 8.9 percent of all US Web visits between January and November 2010, according to New York-based Internet tracker Experian Hitwise.

Google’s main site was second with 7.2 percent, followed by Yahoo Inc.’s Mail service, Yahoo’s Web portal, and Google’s YouTube.

Facebook has more than 500 million users and commands a valuation of more than $40 billion on exchanges for privately held companies.

The site’s leadership in social networking has attracted advertisers such as Coca-Cola Co. and JPMorgan Chase & Co., letting Facebook reach sales of about $2 billion this year, according to people familiar with the matter.

Bloomberg’s report does leave out one caveat – Google was still No. 1 when you combine its various properties (Google.com, Gmail, YouTube, Google News, etc.). By that measure, Google got 9.85% of all U.S. visits to Facebook’s 8.9%, according to Hitwise.

Still, Facebook’s rapid growth continues to be nothing short of astonishing. I certainly underestimated Facebook’s potential; unlike Google, which seemed to me like it would be a big deal from the start, I can’t say I sensed what was ahead for “TheFacebook” the day I joined it in March 2004. Then again, considering how rapidly word of the site spread across BU’s campus that day, I probably should have.

If you’re interested in the Facebook-Google rivalry – and you should be, considering the immense power those two companies now have over our digital lives – I recommend Wired magazine’s provocative article about the two from last summer. Here’s an excerpt:

Today, the Google-Facebook rivalry isn’t just going strong, it has evolved into a full-blown battle over the future of the Internet—its structure, design, and utility. For the last decade or so, the Web has been defined by Google’s algorithms—rigorous and efficient equations that parse practically every byte of online activity to build a dispassionate atlas of the online world. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg envisions a more personalized, humanized Web, where our network of friends, colleagues, peers, and family is our primary source of information, just as it is offline. In Zuckerberg’s vision, users will query this “social graph” to find a doctor, the best camera, or someone to hire—rather than tapping the cold mathematics of a Google search. It is a complete rethinking of how we navigate the online world, one that places Facebook right at the center. In other words, right where Google is now.

Update: And now Goldman Sachs has made an investment that values Facebook at $50 billion.

(photo: Wikipedia)


Gablinske e-mail case shows Gmail isn’t secret

December 1st, 2010 at 9:00 am by under General Talk

Secrecy has been having a rough time of it this week in the wake of WikiLeaks’ document dump. Closer to home, there was a related lesson buried in the news – first reported by WPRI.com – that a union official was arrested Tuesday for allegedly sending phony e-mails purportedly from state Rep. Doug Gablinske.

Bristol Police Lt. Steven Contente issued a statement late Tuesday explaining what led investigators to the individual who was charged, John Leidecker of the National Education Association Rhode Island. Leidecker is innocent until proven guilty, of course, but Contente’s statement is a reminder of just how easy it is to trace our digital footsteps:

Records were obtained from Gmail that showed log-on times and two IP addresses that were used to access the douggablinski@gmail.com account. One IP Address was registered to the National Education Association. The second IP Address was registered to Verizon.net.

Records from Verizon.net were obtained and contained the customer name of John Leidecker with an account address of 154 Friendly Rd., Cranston, R.I. Search warrants were executed this morning at Mr. Leidecker’s home address at 154 Friendly Rd. and his employer, the National Education Association in Cranston, R.I.

Update: In a follow-up e-mail, Lt. Contente says investigators got a search warrant in order to obtain both Verizon and Google’s user information.