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Category Archives: Freedom of Information

FBI Wish List: An App That Can Recognize the Meaning of Your Tattoos

EFF: “We’ve long known that the FBI is heavily invested in developing face recognition technology as a key component in its criminal investigations. But new records, obtained by EFF through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit, show that’s not the only biometric marker the agency has its eyes on. The FBI’s wish list also includes image recognition technology and mobile devices to attempt to use tattoos to map out people’s relationships and identify their beliefs. EFF began looking at tattoo recognition technology in 2015, after discovering that the National Institute for Standards & Technology (NIST), in collaboration with the FBI, was promoting experiments using tattoo images gathered involuntarily from prison inmates and arrestees. The agencies had provided a dataset of thousands of prisoner tattoos to some 19 outside groups, including companies and academic institutions, that are developing image recognition and biometric technology. Government officials instructed the groups to demonstrate how the technology could be used to identify people by their tattoos and match tattoos with similar imagery. Our investigation found that NIST was targeting people who shared common beliefs, with a heavy emphasis on religious imagery.  NIST researchers, we discovered, had also bypassed basic oversight measures. Despite rigid requirements designed to protect prisoners who might be used as subjects in government research, the researchers failed to seek sign-off from the in-house watchdog before embarking on the project…”

HHS takes down Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality Website

This site has been archived and remains available via the Internet Archive – https://web.archive.org/web/20180713143753/https://guideline.gov/ “The AHRQ National Guideline Clearinghouse (NGC, guideline.gov) Web site will not be available after July 16, 2018 because federal funding through AHRQ will no longer be available to support the NGC as of that date. AHRQ is receiving expressions of interest… Continue Reading

Free Law Project – The Special Counsel Cases

“On October 30, 2017, the first cases brought by Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller, III were unsealed. The U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia unsealed an indictment against Paul Manafort and Richard Gates, as well as the full docket of a second case against George Papadopoulos, in which the defendant had already pled… Continue Reading

Coalition Calls for Urgent Investigation of Destruction of Records on Family Separation Crisis

“Open the Government, together with a coalition of organizations committed to government accountability, civil liberties, human rights, and civil rights, is calling on Congress to immediately investigate the administration’s records management practices relating to the “zero-tolerance” immigration enforcement policy and family reunification efforts. This policy has caused a major humanitarian crisis, and the administration has… Continue Reading

POGO Informs Treasury – Federal Spending Site Still Lacks Data After Revamp

Via BGOV: “…A recently revamped federal website designed to make contract spending information publicly accessible is plagued with major data gaps, a watchdog group reports. A new version of the Treasury Department-run USAspending.gov, officially launched March 2, was designed to remedy missing or faulty information on federal contract awards and executive compensation. The site was re-launched under… Continue Reading

White House Produces No Evidence It Considered Public Input on Reorganizing Government

Government Executive: “The White House has no records relating to its categorization or analysis of public input on how it should reorganize government, according to the results of a lawsuit filed by a watchdog group. Following President Trump’s 2017 executive order calling on all federal agencies to reform themselves by shedding workers and restructuring their… Continue Reading

NSA Reports Call Detail Records (CDR) Deletion

NSA/CSS Statement, June 28, 2018: “Consistent with NSA’s core values of respect for the law, accountability, integrity, and transparency we are making public notice that on May 23, 2018, NSA began deleting all call detail records (CDRs) acquired since 2015 under Title V of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). The Government relies on Title… Continue Reading

Freedom of Information Act: Agencies Are Implementing Requirements but Additional Actions Are Needed

Freedom of Information Act: Agencies Are Implementing Requirements but Additional Actions Are Needed, GAO-18-365: Published: Jun 25, 2018. Publicly Released: Jun 25, 2018. “All 18 selected agencies had implemented three of six Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requirements reviewed. Specifically, all agencies had updated response letters to inform requesters of the right to seek assistance… Continue Reading

Trump Refuses to Release Data on Immigration Crackdown

Bloomberg: ICE’s disappearing records make it difficult to examine whether reality meets the president’s rhetoric. “Five days into his presidency, Donald Trump took aim at illegal immigration with executive orders signaling a new era of heavy enforcement. Not only did he threaten to go after undocumented immigrants, many of whom he labeled violent criminals, he… Continue Reading

New on LLRX – The Case of the Torn Presidential Record and the Future of Its Library

New on LLRX – The Case of the Torn Presidential Record and the Future of Its Library– Brandon Wright Adler addresses the destruction of Presidential documents and records brought to our attention this past week in a rather startling article published by Politico – “The president’s unofficial ‘filing system’ involves tearing up documents into pieces,… Continue Reading

Trump’s unofficial ‘filing system’ – tearing up WH documents requiring preservation

Politico: “…Under the Presidential Records Act, the White House must preserve all memos, letters, emails and papers that the president touches, sending them to the National Archives for safekeeping as historical records. But White House aides realized early on that they were unable to stop Trump from ripping up paper after he was done with… Continue Reading

Removal of 26 Documents for Asylum Officer Training from the USCIS Website

Sunlight Foundation: “The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) removed a cache of materials on its asylum process shortly after President Donald Trump took office, a reduction in access detailed in our latest Web Integrity Project report. The 26 removed documents, which collectively run to several hundred pages, constitute training materials for USCIS asylum officers,… Continue Reading