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How To Know If I M On A Government Watch List

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Contact An Attorney If You Are Placed On A No Fly List In Error

Are you on a federal watch list?

The DHS TRIP process is designed to help those who have been delayed or detained in error because their names are like those who are on the list. In a few cases, however, people who are not terrorists have discovered themselvesas themselveson lists, without the opportunity to figure out why . If you are in this rare situation, contact your attorney for further steps.

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Watchdog Elites Global Sanctions Lists

Minimize the risk of fraud and illegal activity by ensuring your business and its customers are lawful and legitimate through routine denied party screening of U.S. and international watch lists. WatchDOG Elite gives you peace of mind by scanning these international sanctions lists:

  • Australia Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade List
  • Canada: Freezing Assets of Corrupt Foreign Officials
  • Canada: Special Economic Measures Act
  • Canada Sanctioned Countries List

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How To Check An Employee Against The Government Watch List

In today’s political and legal climate, companies have to be more careful than ever to ensure their hires don’t present liabilities. Harboring criminals or illegal persons can lead to fines, lawsuits and regulatory action. Background investigations, which include checking the U.S. Treasury Department’s Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons list, have become a common human resources practice, recommended by organizations that include the Society for Human Resource Management. The Finance Industry Regulatory Authority requires specially designated nationals checks for all employees of investment firms and banks.

Companies doing their due diligence, will find the U.S. Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control has made this list highly accessible to the public. You may check the list directly yourself, or via a background search firm.

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Americans On Fbi Watchlist Face Detention Extra Screenings When Flying

The ACLU estimates 1.6 million people are currently on the federal watchlist.

Americans on FBI watchlist face detention, extra screenings when flying

Already missing their flight to Canada, Zainab Merchant held her then 6-month-old baby inside a cold room in an airport in September of 2016 while she waited for her husband’s screening to be over after her family was detained for a random security check by Transportation Security Administration agents.

Merchant said her family was stopped for one reason because she’s Muslim.

“At that moment, I honestly feared for us, because when I think the three-hour mark hit, you’re just sitting there waiting,” Merchant told ABC News. “We don’t know what’s going on with us. I just remember being very fearful about what was going on. It’s a few officers and yourself, and nobody is there. No other person was there with us. So just very lonely, cold, dark experience.”

Merchant, an American citizen, is among the many people on America’s terrorist screening watchlist, a database containing information about individuals targeted as known or suspected of being involved in terrorist activities, according to the FBI.

Unlike the “no-fly” list, the watchlist still allows people to fly. They are, however, subject to extra security, extensive questioning and hourslong detentions when flying or crossing the border.

How To Get Off A Government Watch List

Malfoy on Twitter: " Going to try to RT this every day to remind ...

If you aren’t a Senator who can call up the head of Homeland Security, or a high-powered nun whose boss who can ring up Karl Rove, working free from government watch lists will be a tedious and not-very transparent process.

The first rule for most people in getting off a watch list is to accept that you are not on a list.

Most likely, if you are being singled out at the airport for extra scrutiny, or your credit report says you might match a Treasury list, you are the victim of a bad matching algorithm or a vague watch-list entry for some other person.

For instance, men named Robert Johnson across the country have been logging extra hours at airports because there’s no way for the airlines to know, without an I.D. check, which Robert Johnson is the one the government is looking for.

The signs you are being snagged by a watch list include the repeated inability to print out a boarding pass at home or through a kiosk being pulled aside repeatedly for extra questioning and scrutiny of your luggage not being able to open a bank account or get a mortgage, despite fine credit.

If you only occasionally get an SSSS on your boarding pass, you likely aren’t on a watch list — you’ve just been elected for random screening, or for buying a one-way ticket.

Once you think you are either on, or the collateral damage of, a watch list, you need to figure out which one got you.

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Getting On A Government Watch List

Getting put on the watch list isnt exactly like making prom queen, but it does require a nomination. An agent from the FBI, NSA or other federal agency nominates you. Then, that nomination moves on to the FBIs Terrorist Review and Examination Unit. If you check out as a known or potential terrorist, its on to the Terrorist Screening Center and the watch list.

What exactly does it mean to be appropriately suspected as a potential terrorist? The FBI and the federal government remain tightlipped about specific qualifications, continually referring back to the generic guidelines established in the Presidential Directive.

Besides having a criminal record for terrorist-related activities or known associations with terrorists or terrorist organizations, there are other ways people get pegged for the list. Active membership in some extremist groups could get you a spot. For instance, the eco-extreme group Earth Liberation Front has been the focus of FBI investigations for the property damage members have caused. The FBI calls this groups activity special interest terrorism . But if youre concerned that reading HowStuffWorks article How easy is it to steal a nuclear bomb will set off the feds alarm systems, dont worry. Unless you actually attempt to steal a nuclear bomb yourself, youre probably fine.

So what about all those average Joes who have been stopped and searched by government officials? Are they terrorists in sheeps clothing?

Background On The National Sex Offenders Registry

Our Crimes Against Children Unit at FBI Headquarters coordinated the development of the National Sex Offenders Registry , which is currently managed by the FBIs Criminal Justice Information Services Division.

The Pam Lychner Sexual Offender Tracking and Identification Act of 1996 required the Attorney General to establish a national database at the FBI to track the whereabouts and movements of certain convicted sex offenders under Title 42 of the United States Code Section 14072. The National Crime Information Center run by the FBI enables the NSOR to retain the offenders current registered address and dates of registration, conviction, and residence.

The Lychner Act imposed two major obligations on the FBI that became effective October 3, 1997:

  • To establish a national database that tracks the location and movements of each person who has been convicted of a criminal offense against a victim who is a minor, has been convicted of a sexually violent offense, or is a sexually violent predator.
  • To register and verify the addresses of sex offenders who reside in states without a minimally sufficient sex offender registry program. Today, all 50 states have minimally sufficient SOR programs.
  • The Jacob Wetterling Crimes Against Children and Sexual Violent Offender Registration Program, enacted in 1994, provides a financial incentive for states to establish registration programs for persons who have been convicted of certain sex crimes.

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    Port Of Entry Encounters

    From the provided data, you cant read too much into the numbers at a controlled port of entry. These might, for instance, be individuals who drive a long-haul truck back and forth from Canada to Detroit, flagging on the database multiple times a week, or an American importer who frequently moves between Nuevo Laredo and Laredo. So those numbers are way higher than the ones reflecting illegal border-crossers.

    POE totals may include multiple encounters of the same individual, the new section notes in the postscript.

    Most hits at a POE probably are not foreign nationals without legal status from beyond Canada, Mexico, or the United States. They may be Canadians or Americans or Mexicans who have legal status to travel back and forth, thus not overtly trying to run and hide as terrorists.

    Perhaps more concerning might be POE encounters with new foreign national travelers on the terror watch list who show up for the first time to claim asylum, which will raise bigger alarms . These individuals are usually denied entry.

    The new statistics page doesnt break any of this down but CBP might consider doing so later for greater clarity.

    Hot And Cold Biden Administration Decides To Go With Hot

    Getting on — and off — the FBI watch list

    Its not clear why the Biden administration decided to do this. One official told me it was because media and members of Congress were increasingly demanding information about KST border crossings amid the historic ongoing mass migration crisis at the border, so why not lighten the work load?

    As I reported recently, Fox News broke a story that DHS logged 23 terrorist encounters in the 2021 calendar year . Rep. Chip Roy got a return on an information demand for terrorist border encounters: 43 at both at and between ports of entry for the time period he requested .

    I emailed a question to CBP public affairs, but didnt hear back right away.

    For whatever reason, the page went up and kudos go to the Biden administration, which has proven either hot and cold on whether to ever acknowledge this threat.

    As I wrote last year, the Biden administration went icy cold in April 2021, when it quickly quashed a CBP press release that provided exquisite detail about two Yemeni terror suspects caught in Calexico, Calif., in January and March 2021. The press release lasted a single day but still resides in the Internet archives.

    The administration went hot last March, when Biden-appointed DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas admitted to a U.S. House Homeland Security Committee hearing that KSTs have tried to cross the border, the land border … not only this year but last year, the year prior and so on and so forth. No one reported that but me, of course.

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    Get Quick And Easy Access To Public Records Through Ourpublicrecordsorg

    Have you tried putting together a family tree and come to a dead end? Maybe you have a few family members you just cant find or relatives that belong on your tree but youre not sure where. We offer help for those looking for birth and death records and those who want to know where they can find all types of public records on the web.

    Why I Felt I Was On A Government List

    People often wonder if their names have somehow made it on the The List, the watchlist of US citizens whom the government suspects may be up to something nefarious. I would venture to say, the best way to know if youre on the watchlist would be to recognize how often you find yourself forced into unique situations that fall beyond the norm.

    I run several websites, some of which could be considered controversial, dealing with topics such as government conspiracy, security, foreign governments, survival, chemical science, etc. I also work for a critical infrastructure company that requires monthly flights to various home offices around the country. A few years ago, I went through a period of time when *every* time I passed through security, I was pulled aside. After more than a year or so of being singled out, you gotta figure your name is on some sort of list. Was it time to head underground?

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    What Constitutes A Government Watch List

    If you need to find out if someone is under the government watch list, making an online search is a great option. Government watch list reveals identified debarred parties, specially designated nationals, and entities of proliferation. It can also help you identify foreign terrorist groups, people who are involved in narcotics traffickers and those that have been marked under watch status by the U.S. and international government agencies.

    The government watch list search will provide various records in a safe, swift and convenient manner. These records can be accessed in as fast as five minutes, without difficulty. Simply enter some information such as first name, group name and possible location of a person that you are searching. The process is handy and in a matter of minutes, government watch list and other pertinent information from various sources can be viewed.

    Q: What Kind Of Law Enforcement Officers Might Try To Question Me

    USA Bucket List

    A: You could be questioned by a variety of law enforcement officers, including state or local police officers, Joint Terrorism Task Force members, or federal agents from the FBI, Department of Homeland Security , Drug Enforcement Administration, Naval Criminal Investigative Service, or other agencies.

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    In 2010, an American security contractor attempting to board a plane to Texas from Bogotá, Colombia, was denied a boarding pass. That was when Raymond Earl Knaeble first learned that he had been placed on a U.S. government terrorist watch list.

    Knaeble, who was heading home before starting a new job in Qatar, was delayed for weeks. He lost the job. He later sued the Justice Department with the help of the American Civil Liberties Union, claiming his due process rights were violated.

    Omar Mateen was also on a government terrorist watch list on two occasions but had been taken off by the time he bought the guns he used to massacre 49 people at an Orlando nightclub.

    Critics have long blasted the effectiveness and reliability of the terrorist watch list system, asserting that too many people, like Knaeble, are swept up by law enforcement agencies without proper vetting or due process and that too many other, certifiable threats, like Mateen, are left out.

    Those concerns received heightened attention in the past few weeks, as the U.S. Senate considered, and ultimately rejected, proposals aimed at expanding a ban on gun sales to people on government terrorist watch lists. A sit-in by Democrats in the House of Representatives seeking to force a votes on the watch list and other gun restriction bills ended with lawmakers vowing to continue their campaign after the Independence Day holiday.

    Here is a guide to understanding the debate as it moves forward.

    Fact Sheet: Federal Watch Lists

    Fact Sheet: Federal Watch Lists

    FACT SHEETDepartment of Homeland Security Inspector General Agrees

    The U.S. government has long developed and maintained various watch listsas part of national security and law enforcement efforts. However, in the wake of the 9/11 attacks, the scope and relevance of these lists has increased exponentially and with it, serious implications for law-abiding citizens.


    The Washington Post reported on October 9, 2004 that the federal governments no-fly list had 16 names on it on Sept. 11, 2001. Today, it has more than 20,000. The numbers alone cause concern. But the way the lists are maintained and used presents grave challenges to civil liberties of all Americans.

    According to a recently issued General Accounting Office report, the government maintains more than a dozen watch lists, including:

  • Treasurys Office of Foreign Assets Control Specially Designated Nationals list
  • Department of State Terrorist Exclusion List
  • Transportation Security Administration No Fly list and Selectee list
  • Department of Commerce, Bureau of Industry and Security Denied Persons List and the Entities List
  • FBI Most Wanted List and Watch List
  • everal privacy concerns related to watch list consolidation have yet to be addressed. One concern is the lack of a privacy policy, agreed to by all participants involved in watch list consolidation.
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    Get Up To Date Information

    Non-partisan think tanks and other research organizations have begun making recommendations for keeping watch lists use limited and fair. For interesting and clearly written information on what is being and can be done, check out:

    • The Constitution Projects March 2007 Report, Promoting Accuracy and Fairness in the Use of Government Watch Lists
    • The Electronic Privacy Information Center resources on air travel privacy

    How To Get Off A Government Watchlist

    Exploring the underground web, what the government doesn’t want you to see

    Of course, if youre on the watchlist for a valid reason, get used to it. Otherwise, there is one action you can take to potentially have your name removed from the list.

  • Try the Department of Homeland Security Traveler Redress Inquiry Program .
  • However, be aware that removal of your name from the list can only be done by the agency that put you on the list in the first place. That means you have to find the agency that nominated you for the list and appeal to them directly. Yeah, good luck with that.

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    Theres Room For The Family

    A precursor data set that feeds the Terrorist Screening Database is the Terrorist Identities Datamart Environment, or TIDE, maintained by the National Counterterrorism Center. TIDE contains records of known or suspected international terrorists. It also contains information on their families and perhaps their friends.

    Alien spouses and children of people NCTC labels terrorists get put into TIDE. They may be inadmissible to the United States, presumed to be dangerous. TIDE also contains non-terrorist records of people who have a close relationship with KNOWN or SUSPECTED terrorists, the guidance reads. Examples listed are fathers or brothers, although the guidance does not specify a blood or marital relationship as necessary for inclusion. Those people can be American citizens or noncitizens inside the United States. While those close relation are not supposed to be passed on for watchlisting absent other derogatory information, their data may be retained within TIDE for unspecified analytic purposes.

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