According the the Bureau of Prisons (BOP), TRULINCS (also known as Corrlinks) is described as follows:
“The Trust Fund Limited Inmate Computer System (TRULINCS) is a new program currently being deployed by the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) to provide inmates with some limited computer access, to include the capability to send and receive electronic messages without having access to the Internet. This program is designed in part to assist in the inmate’s eventual release to the community. Electronic messaging has now become a standard form of communication within most American homes and businesses, and it can now be used to help inmates stay connected to their families. Strengthening or re-establishing family ties helps inmates improve the likelihood of a successful re-entry into the community, thus reducing the potential for recidivism.”
The description states that this email system has limited access to the internet, so this isn’t the email that most people think of. The email that an inmate’s family member sends goes to a server that’s monitored by the BOP. Once it’s approved, it goes to the inmate’s computer. Since emails have to be monitored and approved, it could take up to two hours for an inmate to receive an email or for the family to receive an inmate’s email. For one conversation, the turnaround time is four hours! If you or a loved one would like to sign up for TRULINCS, use the form below. Don’t forget, there’s a cost for this service, about $0.05 per minute.
Herlong’s Prison Camp had two rooms with computers. The main inmate computer room and the Law Library. Inside the Law Library, inmates were allowed to use the two computers free of charge, but only up to two hours at a time. If an inmate logged off, he would have to wait 15 minutes to log back in. However, in the Law Library, inmates had no access to the public messaging system. In the other computer room, inmates had access to everything except the Law Library functions.
During my stay (May 2011 – May 2012), music, request to staff forms, and surveys were unaccessible in either rooms.
Below are pictures from the “Bulletin Board” option of TRULINCS, which is how an inmate might see it at Herlong Federal Prison Camp. To see how TRULINCS looks from the Inmate’s family computer, click here: Corrlinks.