RPT: NSA Broke Privacy Rules Thousands of Times Per Year
Washington Post reporter Carol Leonnig joined Greta Van Susteren Thursday night to discuss breaking news after a FISA judge said that the court has limitations on the extent to which it can fact-check government claims, adding the shocking revelation that the NSA has violated privacy rules thousands of times per year.
"The NSA doesn't seem to want to explain or elaborate on the details of why this happens so frequently that they seem to be searching on the wrong names, or searching on U.S. persons improperly, or searching on people they have no reasonable suspicions are connected to terrorist groups," Leonnig said.
Read more from FoxNews.com, below:
The National Security Agency has overstepped its authority and broken privacy rules thousands of times every year since being given new surveillance powers by Congress in 2008, The Washington Post reported, citing an internal audit and other secret documents.
The documents, which the Post claims it received earlier this summer from NSA leaker Edward Snowden, detail how the controversial agency has crossed the line many times over in its collection of massive amounts of data from around the world.
Despite repeated claims by officials that the NSA does not spy on Americans, the Post reports that the bulk of the infractions involved improper surveillance of Americans or foreign targets in the U.S. Some of the infractions were inadvertent, caused by typographical errors resulting in U.S. calls or emails being intercepted. Others were more serious.
The Post reported that the most significant violations included the unauthorized use of information on more than 3,000 Americans and green-card holders. In another incident, the Post reported that a “large number” of calls from Washington were intercepted in 2008 after the Washington area code 202 was confused with the code 20, which is the code for dialing to Egypt.
In total, an NSA audit from May 2012 reportedly found 2,776 incidents in the prior 12 months of improper collection and handling of communications.
In another case, the special court that oversees the NSA did not learn about a new collection method until it had been underway for months. The court ruled the method unconstitutional, according to the Post.
"NSA’s foreign intelligence collection activities are continually audited and overseen internally and externally,” an NSA official told Fox News late Thursday. “When NSA makes a mistake in carrying out its foreign intelligence mission, the agency reports the issue internally and to federal overseers -- and aggressively gets to the bottom of it."