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Chris Hoofnagle is a specialist in privacy law at the University of California's Boalt Hall School of Law.

CHRIS HOOFNAGLE, Privacy Law Specialist, U.C. Berkeley Boalt Hall School Of Law: Pretexting is much like an identity theft. In identity theft, someone uses your personal information to steal your money or access to your accounts.

Pretexting is similar, but, instead of stealing money, what they're doing is, they're stealing information about you: where you live, the people with whom you talk on the telephone, etcetera.

SPENCER MICHELS: He says the H.P. case is an important one.

CHRIS HOOFNAGLE: This is a case that involves extremely powerful people having their telephone records essentially stolen by private investigators as part of an inquiry into their activities. And, if you think about it, your phone records reveal a lot about you. They reveal who your friends are, your political contacts.