Memorandum of Agreement Between the Attorney General and the Director of National Intelligence on Guidelines for Access, Retention, Use, and Dissemination by the National Counterterrorism Center of Terrorism Information Contained Within Datasets Identified as Including Non-terrorism Information and Information Pertaining Exclusively to Domestic Terrorism [With 2012 Guidelines Amendments]   [open pdf - 347KB]

This document is referenced in an October 26, 2012 from the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) to the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board (PCLOB) of the U.S. General Services Administration. The document specifically pertains to "program activities under the amended National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC) guidelines signed by Attorney General Eric Holder and Director of National Intelligence James Clapper in March 2012" which "authorize collection authorities on a scale not claimed since Congress de-funded the Total Information Awareness program." According to the ACLU letter to the PCLOB, "Under the original 2008 guidelines, NCTC, being an element of the intelligence community, was properly limited in its authority to collect and retain information about United States persons (American citizens and legal residents) who were not suspected of involvement with terrorism. If the NCTC collected information about US persons not related to terrorism, it was treated as a mistake that had to be identified and corrected by purging such information from NCTC databases within 180 days. This requirement served as a check on the NCTC's domestic activities, and a necessary protection of innocent Americans' privacy. Under the 2012 guidelines, however, NC TC can now intentionally collect non-terrorism related US person information , and that information can be 'retained and continually assessed' for five years. NCTC can now target any U.S. government databases for ingestion based simply on the NCTC Director's determination that it contains 'significant terrorism information,' which the guidelines do not define." The referring ACLU letter can be accessed at the following URL: https://www.hsdl.org/?abstract&did=738533

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