WASHINGTON (AP) -- The government is secretly collecting records of ordinary Americans' phone calls in an effort to build a database of every call made within the country, it was reported Thursday. AT&T, Verizon and BellSouth telephone companies began turning over records of tens of millions of their customers' phone calls to the National Security Agency program shortly after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, said USA Today, citing anonymous sources it said had direct knowledge of the arrangement. The program does not involve listening to or taping the calls. Instead it documents who talks to whom in personal and business calls, whether local or long distance, by tracking which numbers are called, the newspaper said. The NSA and the Office of National Intelligence Director did not immediately respond to requests for comment.