Senate Report: Post 9/11 “Fusion Centers” Offended Civil Liberties
SURVEILLANCE—U.S.October 4, 2012
A newly released Senate subcommittee report has found that centers established after September 11, 2001, to share counterterrorism data with local and federal law enforcement put Americans’ civil liberties at risk, NPR reports. Since 2003, more than 70 “fusion centers” were established, costing an estimated $289 million to $1.4 billion. But the centers “forwarded ‘intelligence’ of uneven quality—oftentimes shoddy, rarely timely, sometimes endangering citizens’ civil liberties and Privacy Act protection,” the subcommittee report states. The report recommends the Department of Homeland Security “revisit the statutory basis for DHS support of fusion centers,” conduct assessments on information-sharing and strengthen protections of civil liberties.