U.S. to keep intelligence data on Americans with no terror ties

The Associated Press reports: The U.S. intelligence community will now be able to store information about Americans with no ties to terrorism for up to five years under new Obama administration guidelines.

Until now, the National Counterterrorism Center had to immediately destroy information about Americans that was already stored in other government databases when there were no clear ties to terrorism.

Giving the NCTC expanded record-retention authority had been called for by members of Congress who said the intelligence community did not connect strands of intelligence held by multiple agencies leading up to the failed bombing attempt on a Detroit-bound airliner on Christmas 2009.

“Following the failed terrorist attack in December 2009, representatives of the counterterrorism community concluded it is vital for NCTC to be provided with a variety of datasets from various agencies that contain terrorism information,” Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said in a statement late Thursday. “The ability to search against these datasets for up to five years on a continuing basis as these updated guidelines permit will enable NCTC to accomplish its mission more practically and effectively.”

The new rules replace guidelines issued in 2008 and have privacy advocates concerned about the potential for data-mining information on innocent Americans.

“It is a vast expansion of the government’s surveillance authority,” Marc Rotenberg, executive director of the Electronic Privacy Information Center, said of the five-year retention period.

The government put in strong safeguards at the NCTC for the data that would be collected on U.S. citizens for intelligence purposes, Rotenberg said. These new guidelines undercut the Federal Privacy Act, he said.

“The fact that this data can be retained for five years on U.S. citizens for whom there’s no evidence of criminal conduct is very disturbing,” Rotenberg said.

“Total Information Awareness appears to be reconstructing itself,” Rotenberg said, referring to the Defense Department’s post-9/11 data-mining research program that was killed in 2003 because of privacy concerns.

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3 thoughts on “U.S. to keep intelligence data on Americans with no terror ties

  1. Norman

    Yes, by all means, do this. After all, some 3rd party vendor who provides software for the various agencies, even monitoring same, now becomes “GOD”. Heaven help us that the Homeland Security behemoth is using such software/operators that use so called “keywords” to cause all people who may utter such “keywords” to be put on a list of suspected terrorists. Before we know it, all 300+ million citizens will be on that list, even babies who utter ma ma or da da.

  2. DE Teodoru

    We’ve seen this play before, in postWWI & postWWII Europe. But back then we had only one goal in life: GET TO AMERICA WHERE INDIVIDUAL FREEDOM REIGNS! Now that we settled here it’s over. The fall of Communism has broken the last thread of fear that obligated politicians and “commercialists” to make the difference between US & USSR clear by protecting our rights so that we might be motivated to protect them. With the end of Communism, the ex-Commie states, rich in slave labor, became investment sink holes for our Wall Streeters, just as they had been for the “anti-Commie” (sic) neocons during the Cold War. Until 1980s, Marx could always be dismissed because his “surplus value” theory was negated by the fact that capitalist ALWAYS turned most of their profits into capital by RE-INVESTING them in their industries. Back then, riddled with gangsters and ideologues, labor unions seemed like the corrupt bad guys. But now, Wall Streeters– who invest in anything– from illicit drugs to water– that will turn a profit, PERFECTLY FIT MARX’S DEFINITION having become trader “ENTREPRENEURS”– taker (preneurs) in the middle (entre) who play with everyone’s pensions, having no better expertise than 50/50, yet taking major commissions by monopolizing trading floors so all have to invest through them. Such was and is the economic side of FASCISM and ironically many of these eco-fascists are Zionists like Adelman trying to turn money into US foreign policy. So, is anyone surprised that Obama is illicitly trading information about everyone of us for campaign contributions? Compared to the Republicans he looks damned good; but compared to any standard of decency, he’s quite a scum bag. I wonder how he will explain himself to his daughters when they start to think for themselves: “I had no choice, the Pentagon, CIA, NSA, Wall Street and all those Masters of America had me by the balls. I had to GO ALONG TO GET ALONG”,,,, just like the house niggers living under the white master’s roof on the plantation! In four years Obama will be a crushed nobody living in a different America than that which elected him president; an anti-freedom America which he made possible. At least, by then, you can feel avenged for he’ll be the first victim of the “F.GOV” he set up. Or, maybe (pray to God) he’ll surprise us all and become a real hero of fredom in the next term. Either way, be sure to vote for Obama, voting “FuR,” in November, I don’t think I have to explain Fur, do I?

  3. delia ruhe

    You can bet that every word we post on this site has been processed by the cognisphere and stored in those giant databases. The Department of Homeland Security is such a bloated organization that its overpaid employees have nothing better to do than to respond to the patterns spat out by the computers. Maybe we’ll all get our 15 minutes of fame.

    (Doncha love *Person of Interest*?)

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