Declassified FISA Court Opinion for 2020 Shows Even More Warrantless FBI Abuses of NSA Database Including Search Queries for Government Officials and Victims

Posted originally on the conservative tree house on April 26, 2021 | Sundance | 74 Comments

Once again the FBI is outlined by the FISA court using the NSA database for warrantless searches of American citizen information.  This is the fourth consecutive year the FISA court has outlined abuse of the NSA database by FBI workers, contractors and officials.

The latest 67 page FISA compliance review for the year 2020 was written by FISA Court Presiding Judge James Boasberg (same judge from Clinesmith trial).  The opinion was written in November 2020 and declassified (with lots of redactions) today. [pdf version HERE] – [SCRIBD pdf HERE and Below]

I’m still going through the report; however, understanding the issues in current politics, TechnoFog has a well written succinct encapsulation of the top-line issues [READ HERE] which includes:

[…] April 2019 – July 2019: An FBI technical information specialist was involved in “Compliance incidents” by conducting 124 queries of Section 702-acquired information on (1) Volunteers who had requested to participate in the FBI’s “Citizens Academy”; (2) Persons who needed to enter the field office to perform repairs; and (3) Persons who reported they were victims of a crime.

[…] In other words, the FBI is using FISA acquired information to investigate domestic crimes – not matters of foreign intelligence. These included investigations of “health-care fraud, transnational organized crime, violent gangs, domestic terrorism involving racially motivated violent extremists, as well as investigations relating to public corruption and bribery.”

[…]  “Public corruption and bribery.” I highlight that last part because it means the FBI continued to improperly use FISA-acquired information to spy on government officials.  (read more)

According to the Basberg report seven FBI field offices were implicated in “these and a number of similar violations.”  In other words, institutionally the FBI continues to perform warrantless searches of the NSA database that collects electronic information on every single American.  The FBI is exploiting a backdoor into this database using search queries that violate the fourth amendment.

The FBI is extracting this information for their own personal use; likely political use including surveillance and black files on politicians; and for routine criminal investigations that are supposed to require warrants.

Keep in mind this 2020 review and report encompasses a time-frame prior to October 2020, so we can only imagine how many times since the January 6, 2021, Capitol Hill protest the FBI reached into this NSA database to assist them with their investigation of “domestic extremists”.

Here’s the embed version:

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