- BRIT HUME, HOST: Last time we
reported on the approximately 60 Israelis who had
been detained in connection with the Sept. 11
terrorism investigation. Carl Cameron reported
that U.S. investigators suspect that some of
these Israelis were spying on Arabs in this
country, and may have turned up information on
the planned terrorist attacks back in September
that was not passed on.
- Tonight, in the second of four
reports on spying by Israelis in the U.S., we
learn about an Israeli-based private
communications company, for whom a half-dozen of
those 60 detained suspects worked. American
investigators fear information generated by this
firm may have fallen into the wrong hands and had
the effect of impeded the Sept. 11 terror
inquiry. Here's Carl Cameron's second report.
- (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)
- CARL CAMERON, FOX NEWS
CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Fox News has learned
that some American terrorist investigators fear
certain suspects in the Sept. 11 attacks may have
managed to stay ahead of them, by knowing who and
when investigators are calling on the telephone.
- By obtaining and analyzing data
that's generated every time someone in the U.S.
makes a call.
- UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What city and
- CAMERON: Here's how the system
works. Most directory assistance calls, and
virtually all call records and billing in the
U.S. are done for the phone companies by Amdocs
Ltd., an Israeli-based private elecommunications
- Amdocs has contracts with the 25
biggest phone companies in America, and more
worldwide. The White House and other secure
government phone lines are protected, but it is
virtually impossible to make a call on normal
phones without generating an Amdocs record of it.
- In recent years, the FBI and other
government agencies have investigated Amdocs more
than once. The firm has repeatedly and adamantly
denied any security breaches or wrongdoing. But
sources tell Fox News that in 1999, the super
secret national security agency, headquartered in
northern Maryland, issued what's called a Top
Secret sensitive compartmentalized information
report, TS/SCI, warning that records of calls in
the United States were getting into foreign hands
- in Israel, in particular.
- Investigators don't believe calls
are being listened to, but the data about who is
calling whom and when is plenty valuable in
itself. An internal Amdocs memo to senior company
executives suggests just how Amdocs generated
call records could be used. "Widespread data
mining techniques and algorithms.... combining
both the properties of the customer (e.g., credit
rating) and properties of the specific
'behavior.'" Specific behavior, such as who
the customers are calling.
- The Amdocs memo says the system
should be used to prevent phone fraud. But U.S.
counterintelligence analysts say it could also be
used to spy through the phone system. Fox News
has learned that the N.S.A has held numerous
classified conferences to warn the F.B.I. and
C.I.A. how Amdocs records could be used. At one
NSA briefing, a diagram by the Argon national lab
was used to show that if the phone records are
not secure, major security breaches are possible.
- Another briefing document said,
"It has become increasingly apparent that
systems and networks are vulnerable.Such crimes
always involve unauthorized persons, or persons
who exceed their authorization...citing on
- Those vulnerabilities are growing,
because according to another briefing, the U.S.
relies too much on foreign companies like Amdocs
for high-tech equipment and software. "Many
factors have led to increased dependence on code
developed overseas.... We buy rather than train
or develop solutions."
- U.S. intelligence does not believe
the Israeli government is involved in a misuse of
information, and Amdocs insists that its data is
secure. What U.S. government officials are
worried about, however, is the possibility that
Amdocs data could get into the wrong hands,
particularly organized crime. And that would not
be the first thing that such a thing has
happened. Fox News has documents of a 1997 drug
trafficking case in Los Angeles, in which
telephone information, the type that Amdocs
collects, was used to "completely compromise
the communications of the FBI, the Secret
Service, the DEO and the LAPD."
- We'll have that and a lot more in
the days ahead - Brit.
- HUME: Carl, I want to take you
back to your report last night on those 60
Israelis who were detained in the anti-terror
investigation, and the suspicion that some
investigators have that they may have picked up
information on the 9/11 attacks ahead of time and
not passed it on.
- There was a report, you'll recall,
that the Mossad, the Israeli intelligence agency,
did indeed send representatives to the U.S. to
warn, just before 9/11, that a major terrorist
attack was imminent. How does that leave room for
the lack of a warning?
- CAMERON: I remember the report,
Brit. We did it first internationally right here
on your show on the 14th. What investigators are
saying is that that warning from the Mossad was
nonspecific and general, and they believe that it
may have had something to do with the desire to
protect what are called sources and methods in
the intelligence community. The suspicion being,
perhaps those sources and methods were taking
place right here in the United States.
- The question came up in select
intelligence committee on Capitol Hill today.
They intend to look into what we reported last
night, and specifically that possibility - Brit.
- HUME: So in other words, the
problem wasn't lack of a warning, the problem was
lack of useful details?
- CAMERON: Quantity of information.
- HUME: All right, Carl, thank you
- From David A. Doane
- I have worked in the
telecommunications operational software systems
(OSS) business for a number of years. AMDOCS does
have a significant market share of the local
phone billing through their contracts with the
"Baby Bells", BUT does not
"own" this market, and, there are a
number of other significant players in the
cellular and long distance. For example all
AT&T long distance calls go through a billing
system built by CONVERGYS (a long time supplier
to AT&T). Many very big companies are
involved in this billing space of the total OSS
- AND (and this is a very big and),
most of the installed billing systems are nut
managed by AMDOCS. When a system is installed it
is managed by the telecom customer. One thing
Telecommunications companies are VERY serious
about is owning the billing service, because in
the final analysis that is the only contact that
most end users have with the phone company,
therefore it is the perceived point of value.
Some Telecoms contract out the actual printing
and mailing of the bill and some of the software
companies provide this service (AMDOCS is one
- The bottom line is that there are
points in the billing process that third parties
MAY get a hold of the call detail records, BUT it
is VERY unlikely that one company can have a
large enough share to undermine the system or
mine for data. The only place that this is
possible is with government telecom contractors
and that should be looked into seriously.
- Below is a short list of the
software companies that play in this space.
- Abiliti Solutions
- Apogee Networks
- The Billing College
- Billing World and OSS Today
- The Board Room
- CBILL, Inc.
- Checkfree i Solutions
- ComArch Group
- Comm Soft
- Communications Data Group
- Comporium Data Services
- Comptel Corporation
- CTI Group
- Daleen Technologies
- DST Innovis
- Engel Consulting Group
- EUR Systems
- European Communications
- Exstream Software
- Financial Statement Services
- Fujitsu Consulting
- Group 1 Software
- Hewlett-Packard Company
- High Deal, Inc.
- Info Directions
- Infotech Solutions
- Intec Telecom Systems PLC
- Intrado Inc.
- Isis Papyrus America Inc.
- KPMG Consulting Inc.
- Lucent Technologies
- Mail2000, A UPS Company
- Metavante Corporation
- MIND CTI
- Moore BCS
- nTels Co.
- OSG Billing Services
- Output Technology Solutions
- Platinum Communications, Inc.
- Portal Software
- Quintrex Data Systems
- Schlumberger Sema
- Service Level Corporation
- Smarten U.S.
- SMS Consulting
- SunTec Business Solutions
- Teleflex Systems, Inc.
- TeleStrategies, Inc.
- The Tower Group
- Times Ten Performance Software
- TMNG Inc.
- TSI Telecommunication Services
- United Support Systems
- USHA Communications Technology
- Vertex Inc.
- Vestcom International
- Vibrant Solutions
- XACCT Technologies