Can you image the amount of data collected by the phone companies? Not data on customers, but the data that is created by customers. They can store service records – but for only short periods – and once it’s gone, it’s gone.
Because the service provider data is time sensitive, if an attorney or the authorities need the information for a case, a preservation letter has to be created and sent immediately to all the service providers involved. The preservation letter asks them to save data for a specific account and is urgent before the data is eliminated. The legal wording for cell records and preservation is specific to each service provider and if not complete and accurate, the request could be denied.
The service providers all require a certain legal process for cell records, and if it is not followed per their specifications, it could result in delays and the loss of critical data. That is one of the reasons so many attorneys prefer to work with International Investigators. Our expertise in the field having worked closely with service providers for years, we know exactly what each providers wants and needs and they know we can provide it.
Since the service providers will only comply with a legal order that must be obtained. And in order to cover a variety of situations, there is a certain subpoena language for cell records best used. In fact, there is specific subpoena language for messages, too.
Requests must be outline exactly what should be preserved or what is being requested. That means it could be asking to:
- Subpoena all cell records
- Subpoena records for messages
- Subpoena records for blocked caller
- Subpoena records for restricted caller
or a myriad of other forms of data. The records from the cell phone carriers are important because they contain the data used to do cellular tower triangulation and for locating cellular location at specific times. Cellular location evidence is dependent on cell tower location and the forensic cell tower evidence regarding antennas and directionality analysis. The results of that analysis could mean the difference between a conviction and an acquittal.
No matter what, requests must be detailed and worded properly. Time is of the essence and could be the difference between being able to find the needed evidence – or not.
-T. Wilcox, CEO, International Investigators