Review of the Federal Bureau of Investigation's Use of Exigent Letters and Other Informal Requests for Telephone Records [January 2010]   [open pdf - 207MB]

"On March 9, 2007, the Department of Justice (Department or DOJ) Office of the Inspector General (OIG) issued its first report on the Federal Bureau of Investigation's (FBI) use of national security letters (NSL). Issued in response to the requirements in the USA PATRIOT Improvement and Reauthorization Act of 2005 (Patriot Reauthorization Act), the first report described the use and effectiveness of NSLs, including 'any illegal and improper use,' in calendar years 2003 through 2005. On March 13,2008, the OIG issued its second report on NSLs, which assessed the corrective actions the FBI and the Department had taken in response to the OIG's first NSL report. The second report also described NSL usage in calendar year 2006. In this third report, we describe the results of our investigation of the FBI's use of exigent letters and other informal requests, instead of NSLs or other legal process, to obtain the production of non-content telephone records from employees of three communications service providers (Companies A, B, and C). The OIG conducted this investigation to examine in greater detail the extent of the FBI's use of exigent letters and other informal requests for such information, as well as to assess the accountability of FBI employees and supervisors who were responsible for these practices. We examined the conduct of the FBI personnel who signed these letters or made these informal requests, their supervisors, and the FBI's senior leadership."

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United States Dept. of Justice: http://www.justice.gov/
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Listed on January 27, 2010 [Critical Releases]