Bavarian criminal police in trouble over VOIP eavesdropping

There's been a lot written about how VOIP calls are outside the scope of police and other government agency official eavesdropping legislation, so I was intrigued to read that the LKA, the Bavarian criminal police, are in a spot of bother over their alleged use of a trojan to eavesdrop on Internet telephony calls.

Reports on the German newswires suggest that the LKA has confirmed it has eavesdropped on a number of VOIP calls, but has not used a trojan horse program to do so.

Der Spiegel, the German newsweekly, meanwhile, claims that the LKA and the ZKA, the German customs criminal office, regularly eavesdrop on Internet telephony calls, despite such eavesdropping being clearly illegal, as the calls are often routed via servers outside of Germany.

As a result of the media future about the issue, unconfirmed reports suggest that the Bundestag, the lower chamber of the Federal Parliament in Germany, is considering a change in the law to class VOIP calls in the same category as PSTN calls and so require a court order to intercept and monitor.

If that happens, you bet your bottom dollar that the FBI will be lobbying for a similar change in the law in the US. Unless, of course, the NSA has other plans...