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Why Am I On Government Watch List

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What Information Is Obtained

Are you on a federal watch list?

U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, OIG, excludes certain individuals and entities from participation in Medicare, Medicaid, and other federal health-care programs. The OIG imposes exclusions on over 15,000 individuals and entities based upon the authority contained in Sections 1128 and 1156 of the Social Security Act. Liberty will check the sanction database, which is updated monthly from data provided by the OIG, and contains 18 sanction types, comprised of over 50 categories.

Million Records From The Fbis Terrorist Watchlist Leaked Online

  • A copy of the FBI TSC terrorist watchlist leaked online for three weeks.
  • More than 1.9 million records were leaked, including data linked to the US No Fly List.
  • Unclear if this was an authentic FBI server or one hosting an illegaly obtained copy.

A copy of the FBIs terrorist watchlist was exposed online for three weeks between July 19 and August 9, 2021, a security researcher revealed today.

Known as the FBI Terrorist Screening Center , the database was created in 2003 as a response to the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Managed by the FBI, the database contains the names and personal details of individuals who are known or reasonably suspected of being involved in terrorist activities.

While the database is managed by the FBI, the agency also provides access to it to several other US government agencies, including the Department of State, Department of Defense, the Transportation Security Authority, the Customs and Border Protection, and even some international law enforcement partners.

While the database contains data on suspected terrorists, it is also better known in popular culture as the US No Fly List, being primarily used by US authorities and international airlines to allow entry into the US or travel within its territory.

You Can’t Get Off Yet

There is no procedure to challenge and reverse your status on the no-fly list, the terrorism watchlist or TIDE. Inclusion on any is not typically disclosed making legal remedies difficult nor does the government provide any process for removal. Travelers suspicious about why their attempts to fly were unsuccessful can launch a redress request through the Department of Homeland Security, but that process does not challenge inclusion on a watchlist or database, nor will even successful requests guarantee against future travel restrictions. Procedures that will, identified within the guidance, are exclusively internal government processes.

“The only way to get off the federal watchlist is through the beneficence of a federal agent, routinely coupled with some form of cooperation with the FBI,” Abbas said.

But that lack of redress has now imperiled the no-fly list. Last month, in a federal judge in Oregon ruled that the inability of individuals to extricate themselves from the list is a due-process violation, rejecting the government’s contention that there is no constitutional right to travel.

“Such an argument ignores the numerous reasons that an individual may have for wanting or needing to travel overseas quickly, such as the birth of a child, the death of a loved one, a business opportunity or a religious obligation,” judge Anna Brown found.

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So Whats The Point Of Having A List That Can Be So Inaccurate

Its difficult to measure how successful the watch list has been at preventing terror attacks. The Washington Post reported in 2007 that few of those flagged by the list were arrested or denied entry into the United States. But Leonard Boyle, then-director of the FBI branch overseeing the watch list, said using arrests as a criterion misperceives the role of the list in combating terrorism. Even when authorities dont have enough evidence to make an arrest, watchlisted individuals can be denied visas, licenses to drive hazardous materials or, as in Knaebles case, boarding of airplanes.

Every day, Boyle wrote, the watch list results in known and suspected terrorists being denied entry into this country, refused boarding on commercial flights, or identified by state and local law enforcement officers during routine stops, making Americans significantly safer.

Butcritics can point to several examples of how the watch list system failed to prevent an attack. Some recent terrorists were either on a watch list at some time like Tamerlan Tsarnaev, who successfully bombed the Boston marathon or never at all like the couple who killed 14 people in San Bernardino, California, last year.

Critics say the growth of the watch lists over the years has made them unwieldy and diverted precious resources into investigations of suspects who likely have no links to terrorism.

Where Can I Find The Person Im Looking For

Shaun Micallef

Facebook is one of the largest social media sites on the web, so theres a very good chance that the person youre looking for has a profile there. If you have the full name of the person youre looking for, you can use that to find them on Facebook. You can also find someone on Facebook using just their email address, if you have it.

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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.

Travel To Certain Countries

Frequent trips to a known trouble spot can raise a red flag. If you travel to certain places, the likelihood is you get more scrutiny, says Mann. If you travel frequently to countries that are known to be involved in terrorism or financial crimes, you do run the risk of having your travels alerted more carefully.

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

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.

Have A Similar Name To Someone On The No

A Former FBI Agent Explains the Terrorist Watch List | Explorer

This is a common complaint from those who claim they are on the no-fly list unjustly. If you have a name which is similar in sound or spelling or in phonetical interpretation to someone who probably legitimately should be on the list, youre at risk for finding yourself on the list, says Mann. He cites a friend of his who shares a last name with an Irish Republican Army operative who was active in the 1960s and 1970s. That unfortunate coincidence, says Mann, landed not only his friend on the list but also the mans son who wasnt even born during this operatives heyday.

In 2007, 60 Minutes famously brought together a group of people named Robert Johnson who experienced problems flying, likely because a man also named Robert Johnson had been convicted of plotting to bomb a Hindu temple and a movie theatre in Toronto.

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Dhs Traveler Redress Inquiry Program

The DHS Traveler Redress Inquiry Program can provide resolution to travelers with difficulties getting through security and inspection at airport checkpoints, train stations and when crossing U.S. borders.

  • You are unable to print a boarding pass.
  • You are denied or delayed boarding a plane.
  • You are denied or delayed entry into and exit from the U.S. at a port of entry or border checkpoint.
  • You are continuously referred for additional screening at the airport.

Not Becoming An Informant

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – JULY 3 : San Francisco police officer Carlos Cordova and his dog Fax patrol the ticketing area of the International Terminal at the San Francisco International Airport on July 3, 2007 in San Francisco, California. The U.S. reportedly increased the number of air marshals on overseas flights, and the Airports use additional patrol units as the nation gets ready for the Fourth of July holiday.

According to a federal lawsuit heard in New York this summer, four Muslims say they were put on the no-fly because they refused to spy for the FBI. The mens names were removed from the list but they sued FBI agents for damages.

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Ways You Can End Up On The No

Its probably Americas most controversial list. You can be put on it without your knowledge, and getting off it is extremely difficult.

Its the federal no-fly list, a collection of names of people who are not allowed to board commercial flights into or out of the United States. According to leaked documents obtained by The Intercept, more than 47,000 people were on Americas no-fly list as of August 2013. That number reportedly includes 800 Americans, many of whom dont even know theyre on it. The government sends no official notification to those on the list many times, people dont find out until theyre denied boarding at the airport.

A number of high-profile lawsuits have claimed the government unjustly added people to the list and blocked their efforts to have their names removed. Last summer, a federal court ruled in favor of 13 people who claimed the government violated their constitutional rights to travel by placing them on the no-fly list. The government was ordered to tell the plaintiffs whether theyre on the list, spell out the reasons they are barred from travel, and to give them a chance to challenge the government finding.

The case was one of the biggest challenges yet to the super-secret government list, but the veil that shrouds the no-fly list still remains.

Despite the secrecy, various court cases, news reports and leaked documents have shed some light on the process behind the no-fly list. Here are eight possible ways one can end up on it.

How Big Is The Terrorist Watch List Who Is On It


What is often described as a single, unified list is actually a collection of lists, or databases, created or expanded under the George W. Bush administration to avoid the breakdowns in intelligence sharing that precipitated the September 11 terrorist attacks.

Heres how it breaks down:

The FBIs Terrorist Screening Database is the U.S. governments primary watch list, and what people usually mean when they refer to the terrorist watch list. It contains about 1 million records. About 5,000 of those records 0.5 percent are about Americans.

The screening database is subdivided into other lists. The most well-known of these is the no-fly list, whose members are barred from commercial air travel that passes through the United States. The no-fly list contains about 81,000 names, up from 16 on the eve of September 11, 2001. About 1,000 are Americans.

Though members of the no-fly list are not technically barred from entering the United States by other means, that often doesnt matter, as those who attempt to cross the border via land or sea are often detained and interrogated along their journeys. The FBI shares watch list information with other countries, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection gives recommendations to ship captains about passengers who may pose risks to transportation security.

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The Bop Has Different Security Levels They Are:

  • Federal Prison Camps minimum security facilities
  • Federal Correctional Institutions low or medium security facilities
  • United States Penitentiaries medium or high security facilities
  • Federal Correctional Complexes Co-locations of BOP facilities and have different security locations and genders of inmates

Can Everybody Read The Us Terrorist Watch List

After years of claiming that the Terrorist Screening Database is kept secret within the government, we have now learned that the DHS shares it with more than 1,400 private entities, including hospitals and universities.

Critics say that the watchlist is wildly overbroad and mismanaged, and that large numbers of people wrongly included on the list suffer routine difficulties and indignities because of their inclusion.

The governments admission comes in a class-action lawsuit filed in federal court in Alexandria by Muslims who say they regularly experience difficulties in travel, financial transactions and interactions with law enforcement because they have been wrongly added to the list.

Of course that is the effect.

We need more transparency into this process. People need a way to challenge their inclusion on the list, and a redress process if they are being falsely accused.

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There’s 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”.

How Does The Fbi Watch List Work And Could It Have Prevented Orlando

Why I’m Leaving Canada

Of all the details investigators have uncovered about Orlando terrorist Omar Mateen, perhaps the most infuriating is the fact that he spent 10 months on a government watch list, yet had no trouble buying an assault rifle and a handgun.

Authorities placed Mateen on a watch list in May 2013 after coworkers at the Florida courthouse where he was a security guard told authorities he boasted of connections to al Qaeda and other terrorists organizations. He remained on the list for 10 months, and FBI Director James Comey told reporters this week that during that time the agency placed Mateen under surveillance and had confidential sources meet with him.

But the feds removed Mateen from the list in March 2014, after concluding that he had no significant links to terrorism beyond attending the same mosque as an American suicide bomber who died in Syria. “We don’t keep people under investigation indefinitely, Comey said, adding that he doesn’t see anything that his agents should have done differently.

Comey didnt identify the list Mateen was on, but an unnamed official told the Daily Beast that he was in two databases, the Terrorist Identities Datamart Environment database and the Terrorist Screening Database, more commonly called the terrorist watch list.

Here’s a look at what the lists are and how someone gets their name on one.

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How Do I Know If Im On The Watch List

You probably wont ever know for sure if youre on the master watch list. The FBI doesnt disclose its contents. But its a good bet that if the bureau visits you about a terrorism-related investigation, youre probably on there.

As a result of the ACLUs lawsuit with Knaeble, the government in 2015 began telling Americans they were on the no-fly list and offering some reasons. Travelers still dont get advance notice, however, so the only way to find out if you cant fly is to try to board a plane and see whether you get accosted by security. People on the list can file for redress. But Hugh Handeyside, a staff attorney with the ACLUs National Security Project, says the government provides scant information and there is still no process for contesting your inclusion in front of a neutral third-party.

Knaeble, the U.S. Army veteran stranded in Bogotá, was eventually able to return to the United States in August 2010 but not without trouble. He traveled for 12 days, passing through Panama City before arriving in Mexicali, California. Along the way, American and foreign authorities detained, interrogated, and searched him numerous times.

Even though the government has changed its policies about alerting travelers on the no-fly list, theACLU contends that the process is still far short of constitutional and is fighting in court to get it changed. The debate continues.

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