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More Documented Privacy Invasion

March 6, 2008

The FBI acknowledged it improperly accessed Americans’ telephone records, credit reports and Internet traffic in 2006, the fourth straight year of privacy abuses resulting from investigations aimed at tracking terrorists and spies.

The invasion of privacy occurred before sweeping “new reforms” were implemented in 2007. FBI Director Robert Mueller pointed at banks, telecommunication companies and other private businesses giving the FBI more personal client data than was requested. Of course, we know that that clarity of instructions was probably an issue and that would never be the fault of a government agency.

According to the Associated Press, “An audit by the inspector general last year found the FBI demanded personal records without official authorization or otherwise collected more data than allowed in dozens of cases between 2003 and 2005. Additionally, last year’s audit found that the FBI had underreported to Congress how many national security letters were requested by more than 4,600.”

Has anyone considered the words “blatant disregard”? This is obviously an issue of trust that remains unfulfilled and the assurance of change is pretty weak. Did you hear an apology? Just a weak defense about reformed law. The United States Patriot Act details that “national security letters” are to used as administrative subpoenas for use in suspected terrorism and espionage cases. The letters allow the FBI to require telephone companies, internet service providers, banks, credit bureaus and other businesses to release highly personal records without a judge’s approval. The new audit examines use of “national security letters” issued in 2006. Mueller told senators that the privacy abuse “predates the reforms we now have in place.” The audit of information takes a full year leaving ample time for the FBI and government agencies to cover their needs and activities. Standard business and accounting procedures applied to government agencies would easily take care of this problem. Businesses perform regular and routine accounting and are expected to pay taxes quarterly along with a myriad of other rules to comply with government regulations. Can’t the government agencies be held to the same standards and accuracy? What do you think?

One Comment leave one →
  1. Coreyeu permalink
    March 24, 2008 11:06 pm

    well done, bro

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