FBI analyst improperly searched surveillance data for US senators name in 2022

Written by on August 4, 2023

FBI analyst improperly searched surveillance data for U.S. senator’s name in 2022

Shared By Peter Boykin – American Political Commentator / Citizen Journalist

FBI analyst improperly searched surveillance data for U.S. senator's name in 2022

FBI analyst improperly searched surveillance data for U.S. senator’s name in 2022


FBI analyst improperly searched surveillance data for U.S. senator’s name in 2022

An FBI analyst improperly searched a government surveillance database last year using the last name of a U.S. senator, according to a newly declassified court document.

The surveillance court’s ruling notes more broadly that, despite the improper search in 2022, “There is reason to believe that the FBI has been doing a better job” adhering to its own rules for using warrantless surveillance.

According to the newly declassified court document, in June 2022, an FBI analyst conducted four searches of information collected under the warrantless surveillance program “Using the last names of a U.S. Senator and a state senator.” In both cases, the analyst had information showing that the two lawmakers were being targeted by a foreign intelligence service.

A senior FBI official stressed that “None of these individuals were surveilled” and the FBI “Did not collect any information on them” in response to the search.

More broadly, the analyst’s searches did not fully meet the FBI’s search standards that it considers when determining if a search is “Likely to retrieve foreign intelligence information or evidence of a crime,” the court found.

The senior FBI official, during a press call after the opinion was released, said that while the searches did meet two of the three components the FBI considers – including having a factual basis for believing that it was reasonably likely the search would retrieve such information – it didn’t meet a third component requiring that a search also be “Reasonably tailored” to do so without “Unnecessarily retrieving” other surveillance-collected data.

The foreign intelligence surveillance court opinion released disclosed that the FBI conducted an improper search for a state judge via that person’s social security number in the surveillance database, which took place in October of 2022.

Source: Yahoo


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