Revealed: What Kind Of 'Extra Scrutiny' The Government Gives To Folks On The Terrorist Watchlist

from the we're-about-to-go-through-your-lives dept

We've already written about The Intercept's publication of the US government's guidelines for declaring you a possible terrorist subject to extra scrutiny whenever you run into a government official. But we wanted to do a second post on the part that focuses on just what kind of extra scrutiny you get if you're on the list. Basically, it's dig through every aspect of this person's life that you can:
In addition to data like fingerprints, travel itineraries, identification documents and gun licenses, the rules encourage screeners to acquire health insurance information, drug prescriptions, “any cards with an electronic strip on it (hotel cards, grocery cards, gift cards, frequent flyer cards),” cellphones, email addresses, binoculars, peroxide, bank account numbers, pay stubs, academic transcripts, parking and speeding tickets, and want ads. The digital information singled out for collection includes social media accounts, cell phone lists, speed dial numbers, laptop images, thumb drives, iPods, Kindles, and cameras. All of the information is then uploaded to the TIDE database.

Screeners are also instructed to collect data on any “pocket litter,” scuba gear, EZ Passes, library cards, and the titles of any books, along with information about their condition—”e.g., new, dog-eared, annotated, unopened.” Business cards and conference materials are also targeted, as well as “anything with an account number” and information about any gold or jewelry worn by the watchlisted individual. Even “animal information”—details about pets from veterinarians or tracking chips—is requested. The rulebook also encourages the collection of biometric or biographical data about the travel partners of watchlisted individuals.
In the wake of last month's Wurie decision at the Supreme Court, I'm curious how much of that is now violating the subject's 4th Amendment rights... It seems likely that at least someone is going to challenge these rules.

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 24th, 2014 @ 9:16am

    How?

    How in the world would they even begin to collect such an exhaustive list of information about someone who, in many cases, hasn't done anything illegal?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 24th, 2014 @ 9:16am

    All these invasions of your privacy

    And yet these watchlists failed to prevent multiple attacks

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 24th, 2014 @ 9:19am

    Is this the list the IRS uses?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 24th, 2014 @ 9:26am

    Re: All these invasions of your privacy

    That is not what they are for, they are there to earn someone a bonus on the amount of data collected.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
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    sorrykb (profile), Jul 24th, 2014 @ 9:35am

    Dear Screeners,

    At the moment my pocket litter consists of a Starburst wrapper (sadly empty), a small piece of paper with the words "cat food" written in all caps (highly suspicious), a tissue (possibly Kleenex brand but I can't be sure), and a coin inscribed with the words "Live Free or Die".

    Clearly that last item is incitement to terrorism and qualifies me for the "threat-based expedited upgrade".

    - Me

    P.S. If you try to take my terroristic coin from me I will cut you. I have laundry to do.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 24th, 2014 @ 9:47am

    Re: Re: All these invasions of your privacy

    youdontsay.jpg

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 24th, 2014 @ 10:01am

    Re:

    Dirty Dirty terroristic laundry no doubt

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 24th, 2014 @ 10:10am

    Re: Re:

    Dirty bombs in his shorts.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 24th, 2014 @ 10:15am

    So let me see if I have this straight. As far as the US government is concerned, if you're on the No Fly List, your Fourth Amendment rights are not only forfeit, but should actively be violated as much as possible. Does that about sum it up?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10.  
    identicon
    teka, Jul 24th, 2014 @ 10:15am

    Re: How?

    Because terrorism.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Anonymous Coward, Jul 24th, 2014 @ 10:16am

    Re:

    " a small piece of paper with the words "cat food" written in all caps (highly suspicious)"

    I'll say suspicous, who knew cats knew the difference between caps and lowercase. But the screaming sounds right.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 24th, 2014 @ 10:20am

    Re:

    Laundry Day: Serious Business.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13.  
    icon
    AricTheRed (profile), Jul 24th, 2014 @ 10:26am

    Re: How?

    It is super simple actually.

    When the bag is scanned, that you checked on that flight to wherever, they pull it off the line and pull all of your shit out and go through it. Then they throw back everything they don't want to steal with a little note that says, "hey we went through all of your stuff so suck it citizen. because, TERROISIM!!! the TSA.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14.  
    identicon
    Michael, Jul 24th, 2014 @ 10:51am

    Re:

    Dear sorrykb,

    Thank you for starting the process of taking your personal inventory. I only have a few questions about the items to fulfill my reporting obligations:

    1) What flavor Starburst?
    2) Is the "CAT FOOD" paper white with blue lines, or some other type of paper? Are there tear marks on it or was it cut cleanly from a larger page? It may be easiest to take a digital photo of it and send it to us - it will actually help me collect a handwriting sample anyway.
    3) Has the tissue been used? If it has, I am going to need to collect it from you as we need the DNA sample.
    4) Is the coin legal US tender? If not, we have been instructed to assist people carrying this type of damaging material by simply scratching off the "free" with a sharp object.

    Once again, we appreciate your help. We will be sending you a rubber glove - this is so you can conduct your cavity search and let us know if you find anything. Sorry, we are no longer able to provide lube.

    - Screening Guild of the United States of America

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  15.  
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    Vincent Clement (profile), Jul 24th, 2014 @ 11:34am

    Re:

    Don't forget about the part where you are put on a list, well, because.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  16.  
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    Uriel-238 (profile), Jul 24th, 2014 @ 11:43am

    Re: All these invasions of your privacy

    And yet these watchlists failed to prevent multiple attacks...

    ...which, themselves, were staged by the FBI.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  17.  
    icon
    Ninja (profile), Jul 24th, 2014 @ 12:00pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Bombastic laundry?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  18.  
    icon
    That One Guy (profile), Jul 24th, 2014 @ 3:11pm

    Re:

    Sorta.

    Once you've been designated a 'terrorists', you cease to have any rights according to the USG, and it's hard to violate rights that don't exist.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  19.  
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    Padpaw (profile), Jul 24th, 2014 @ 3:14pm

    The American government acts like Americans have no rights. Why would they suddenly start caring about the constitution when they have been ignoring it for the last several decades

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  20.  
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    Padpaw (profile), Jul 24th, 2014 @ 3:16pm

    Re: All these invasions of your privacy

    That is not the purpose of these lists. The purpose is to control the citizens. condition them into accepting the iron shod boot of authority that kicks down their doors and drags them off into the night never to be seen again. Just for voicing dissent.

    If those in charge cared about terrorism at all they would stop funding and training terrorists, and making up false terrorism plots to justify heavy handed anti freedom laws in the name of fighting terrorism.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  21.  
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    M. Alan Thomas II (profile), Jul 24th, 2014 @ 4:14pm

    Deliberately tracking reading material raises 1st Amendment concerns as well.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  22.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 26th, 2014 @ 11:20am

    "And yet these watchlists failed to prevent multiple attacks" What attacks has there actually been one?

    I think people who debate these things are completely in the dark of where the US STands as a country these days, probably from watching to much tv,you are no longer living in the bright star of freedom, you are being watch tracked and documented daily, they already have all this data on everyone, these things give the illusion that some people are treated different than others, Mostly that is crap, news reporters that report truth get fired, people not supporting the Governments illegal actions meet the same kind of things. They lie and hide most of the illegal things they do, they put gag orders on people so they cant speak. This is reality in the US today ,we look more like China than the United States

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  23.  
    identicon
    GEMont, Jul 26th, 2014 @ 8:31pm

    Re:

    I would think that by now, most Americans would have realized that their government no longer considers itself bound by the laws of the land or the rules implied by the Constitution.

    When the government regularly bends and breaks and re-interprets the laws of the land, in order to spy on and record the daily activities of the public, it should be obvious to one and all, that such a government is no longer working for the people, or obeying the law or even giving lip service to the Constitution.

    When I read something like:

    "Deliberately tracking reading material raises 1st Amendment concerns as well."

    ... I find it almost comical, because the writer still believes that his government and the courts actually considers the constitutional amendments as valid in any way when it pertains to the activities of the government.

    Even when the courts do pay minimal homage to the laws and tell the government to stop breaking the law, or stop performing activities that are unconstitutional, the government simply ignores the courts and carries on as if immune to the courts decisions.

    When was the last time that the courts in America found an activity performed by the government, to be illegal or unconstitutional, and the government stopped performing that activity immediately, to comply with the law?

    Anyone?

    ---

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  24.  
    icon
    John Fenderson (profile), Jul 28th, 2014 @ 8:26am

    Re: Re:

    You mean aside from laws prohibiting gay marriage, laws banning handguns, Voter ID laws, etc.?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  25.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 31st, 2014 @ 3:31pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    "You mean aside from laws prohibiting gay marriage, laws banning handguns, Voter ID laws, etc.?"

    Ah. I had no idea that these were now universally accepted changes throughout the nation and that all member states had complied with the court orders.

    My bad. :)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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