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 FISA warrants

The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 requires that each application for a surveillance warrant from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (called a FISA warrant) is made before an individual judge of the court. Like a grand jury, FISC is not an adversarial court: the federal government is the only party to its proceedings. However, the court may allow third parties to submit briefs as amici curiae. When the Attorney General determines that an emergency exists he may authorize the emergency employment of electronic surveillance before obtaining the necessary authorization from the FISA court, after which the Attorney General or his designee must notify a judge of the court not more than 72 hours after the Attorney General authorizes such surveillance.


If an application is denied by one judge of the FISC, the federal government is not allowed to make the same application to a different judge of the court, but must appeal to the United States Foreign intelligence Surveillance Court of Review. Such appeals are rare: the first appeal from the FISC to the Court of Review was made in 2002, 24 years after the founding of the FISC.


It is also rare for FISA warrant requests to be turned down by the court. Through the end of 2004, 18,761 warrants were granted, while just five were rejected (many sources say four)[citation needed] . Fewer than 200 requests had to be modified before being accepted, almost all of them in 2003 and 2004. The four known rejected requests were all from 2003, and all four were partially granted after being resubmitted for reconsideration by the government. Of the requests that had to be modified, few if any were before the year 2000.

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updated Thu. June 29, 2017

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The FBI obtained a FISA (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act) warrant - and has renewed it more than once - to monitor Page's communications last summer after he traveled to Moscow.
Section 702 of FISA gives the National Security Agency the ability to conduct surveillance on foreign persons without obtaining a warrant from the FISA court. The NSA is not allowed to target U.S. citizens. Congress hasn't found any intentional abuse ...

A few months later, PCLOB released a nearly 200-page report detailing how the government wields surveillance powers authorized by Section 702 of the FISA Amendments Act. The government relies on that part of the statute for programs that allow it to ...
The secret FISA Court had blasted this process as "unreasonable" under the Fourth Amendment, noting that it was likely to result in tens of thousands of constitutionally protected domestic e-mails being acquired without a warrant each year. The public ...
... through what is known as the "backdoor search loophole," the FBI and other agencies may search NSA databases for information about Americans collected under Section 702 without having to go through all that messy and inconvenient business of first ...
Essentially, the government uses this procedure to spy on Americans who may have done no wrong, and the search is not based on probable cause, not based on a real warrant from a real judge. The National Security Agency is designed to keep a ... they ...

The Obama administration required the Department of Justice and Department of Homeland Security to obtain warrants for the use of their 400 Stingrays or cell site simulators, devices that mimic cellphone towers, so all phones within a range connect to ...
Congress passed this part of the FISA law in the wake of 2005 revelations that President George W. Bush had been illegally spying on Americans' phone calls and internet communications with foreigners.
And the lines are being drawn on another major snooping reauthorization battle, this time affecting Section 702 of the FISA Amendments Act, which is set to expire at the end of the year. ... through what is known as the "backdoor search loophole," the ...
The chairman of the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board has recommended that the FBI be required to obtain approval from the FISA court before searching a database of communications gathered under the program in connection with criminal matters ...
The powers under dispute fall under Section 702 of FISA amendments. Section 702 is intended to allow the National Security Agency (NSA) to snoop on the communications of foreign targets.
Can we get a FISA warrant here? Last year, the Bernie Bros' slogan was, "Feel the Bern." Now it seems to be, "Feel the Lead.
11 program through which the N.S.A. collected international phone calls and emails linked to terrorism suspects from American telecommunications providers without the warrants required by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, or FISA. After ...
However, we know that on March 5, 2017, on "Meet the Press," Mr. Clapper said he can deny the existence of a FISA warrant on Trump Tower; which means he was involved in the investigation, yet "by the time I left, I saw no smoking-gun-certitude evidence ...
In this process of "backdoor" searches, the federal government is clearly gaining limited access to the private communications of citizens without getting warrants and with much more limited oversight (there is a FISA court, but it doesn't operate the ...
Earlier this year, we also discovered, due to an ACLU FOIA lawsuit, that the FISA Court has been rejecting FISA warrants for the past year because of the NSA's noncompliance with the minimization procedures. In response, the NSA was eventually forced ...
Former Trump adviser Carter Page says the congressional committees investigating potential collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign are railroading his reputation, and are ignoring his complaints about the FISA warrant obtained to surveil him.

Can't wait for former FBI Director James Comey's first public testimony since Donald Trump abruptly fired him last month? Well, the Senate is serving appetizers.
The hearing centered on a controversial piece of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, known as FISA, that provides the legal framework for collecting foreign intelligence without a warrant. The hearing was called because Congress must decide ...
... no such wiretap activity mounted against the president, the president-elect at the time, or as a candidate, or against the campaign.
The stated topic of the hearing was the law that authorizes the National Security Agency's warrantless surveillance program, the FISA Amendments Act, which is set to expire at the end of 2017. .... an important development in the surveillance debate ...
"It will be debating the fate of an authority - the FISA Amendments Act - that has helped thwart terrorist attacks around the world," Thomas Bossert wrote in a New York Times op-ed.
Roy Blunt, R-Missouri, asked McCabe what happens when the FBI wants to follow up on or pursue a U.S. person in or outside the U.S.
It will be debating the fate of an authority - the FISA Amendments Act - that has helped thwart terrorist attacks around the world.
The FISA provision that permits broad collection of communications of non-Americans or permanent residents located outside of the United States is called Section 702.
The case concerned a defendant convicted of armed robbery based in part on location data obtained from service providers without a warrant under the the Stored Communications Act. The case may cause the Court to review the scope of the "third-party ...
His conversation with Kislyak was obtained through a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant, which allows for the monitoring of any individual in the US, including foreign agents.
In its effort to stop the leaks it also says are not real, the Trump administration has been granted a warrant from the FISA court to track the communications of journalists who have been on the receiving end of those leaks over the last few months ...
"The makers of our Constitution ... conferred, as against the government, the right to be let alone -- the most comprehensive of rights and the right most valued by civilized men.
The NSA and Bush took the position that because the president is constitutionally the commander in chief of the military and because the NSA is in the military, both the president and the NSA are lawfully independent of FISA. The NSA does not ...
The hearing also has the possibility of being explosive because of newly declassified documents that show the FBI and other intelligence agencies were less than careful in their "minimization" efforts regarding information obtained through FISA ...
The New York Post's John Crudele quotes "a Washington source of mine" and informing him that "The Justice Department has gotten a warrant from the U.S. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court - also known as the FISA court - to conduct electronic ...
"It has to do with FISA," Nunes told reporters at the White House who asked him about his meeting with Trump, referring to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.
But he said earlier this month that the committee's requests were "groundless," "outrageous," and "would cover redundant, highly irrelevant information collected in further violation of my civil rights given the unjustified FISA warrants which already ...
While Mensch's credibility has been called into question, she was reliable when reporting on a different story involving FISC, where she broke the news that the FBI, during the Obama administration, obtained a FISA warrant to look into ties between the ...
Later that month, after the FBI believes Page was no longer part of the Trump campaign, it obtains a Federal intelligence surveillance Act ("FISA") warrant to monitor his communications. The initial 90-day warrant is renewed more than once. [Added ...
On May 11, rulings by a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court were declassified by the Director of National Intelligence's office, The Week reports.
What the FISA Court is saying in its April 26 ruling was that these bare minimal rules, which do not even require a warrant to unmask a U.S. person, were not being followed. Since all the agents must show is that the information is relevant to foreign ...
Not surprisingly, the FISA court reprimanded the government about its "lack of candor" and the "serious Fourth Amendment issue[s]" presented by these Obama administration violations.
... violated the Fourth Amendment." Gowdy in particular pinned Brennan on lack of evidence of collusion between President Trump and any Russians.
The story, via a media outlet called Circa, documents a recently released report from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISA Court). The report features examples of the FBI passing along private data it collected without warrants to people ...
technology firms, including facebook and Google, have suggested five "changes" for Congress to consider while reforming foreign surveillance programs that gather vast amounts of personal data which can be accessed by authorities without a warrant.
The Justice Department inspector general's office also shared the FISA judge's concern and believed as early as 2012 that the FBI was being less than transparent with its activities of gathering spy data gathered on Americans without a warrant. In a ...
Page wrote: "underscoring what a complete mockery this process has become, my identity has already been publicly revealed in the wake of the felonies committed [by the Obama administration, including] baseless FISA warrant, Male-1 unmasking, etc.).
But he said earlier this month that the committee's requests were "groundless," "outrageous," and "would cover redundant, highly irrelevant information collected in further violation of my civil rights given the unjustified FISA warrants which already ...
His offer to testify seems to be contingent on two factors: the "release of the contents" of what he called this "illegitimate" FISA warrant and that he is allowed to speak in an open hearing. Page suggested that the testimony be "live-streamed via the ...
... 60 percent were appointed by Obama, illegally unmasked individuals within the Trump team violating their legal protection under privacy as American citizens and anonymously leaked those classified reports collected through a FISA warrant to the media.
"Two separate sources with links to the counter-Intelligence Community have confirmed to Heat Street that the FBI sought, and was granted, a FISA court warrant in October, giving counter-intelligence permission to examine the activities of 'U.S ...
In a critical victory for privacy and the rule of law, a federal court of appeals ruled unanimously today that an ACLU challenge to NSA internet surveillance, Wikimedia v. NSA, can go forward.
Though many of Mensch's claims remain unverified, she has also been the first to report some major developments including the existence of FISA warrants. "Multiple sources with links to the intelligence and law enforcement communities say that Lt. Gen ...


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