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Tag: assessments

ACLU Recommends Budget Cuts Amid Imminent Government Shutdown Threats

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

New FBI Director James Comey may have to make big cuts to the bureau’s budget because of a government shutdown and last year’s sequester.

The ACLU has some ideas about “programs that deserve to get the axe, because they’re ineffective, undermine innocent Americans’ privacy and civil liberties, or simply offend American values.

The recommendations are: Stop identifying neighborhoods by race in order to investigate them; quit collecting information on innocent Americans a part of “Domain Management;” end intrusive programs called “assessments” that target people or groups without any reason to believe they broke the law; do away with the new database, eGuardian, because it encourages racial discrimination; and end the collection of all U.S. telephone call data.

“Spying on innocent people rarely helps find guilty people,” the ACLU wrote. “We hope that by giving Director Comey a few ideas about FBI programs that can be cut to save expenses, he can turn his attention to other abusive FBI practices documented in the ACLU report. Ending practices that violate civil liberties won’t necessarily put the FBI’s budget back in the black, but it is still the right thing to do.”

FBI Casts Wide Net Under Relaxed Rules for Terror Probes

By Charlie Savage
New York Times

WASHINGTON — Within months after the Bush administration relaxed limits on domestic-intelligence gathering in late 2008, the F.B.I. assessed thousands of people and groups in search of evidence that they might be criminals or terrorists, a newly disclosed Justice Department document shows.

In a vast majority of those cases, F.B.I. agents did not find suspicious information that could justify more intensive investigations. The New York Times obtained the data, which the F.B.I. had tried to keep secret, after filing a lawsuit under the Freedom of Information Act.

The document, which covers the four months from December 2008 to March 2009, says the F.B.I. initiated 11,667 “assessments” of people and groups. Of those, 8,605 were completed. And based on the information developed in those low-level inquiries, agents opened 427 more intensive investigations, it says.

To read more click here.

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