F.B.I. agents get leeway to push privacy bounds

New powers raise ‘potential for abuse,’ says former agent who is now ACLU lawyer By CHARLIE SAVAGE – The New York Times updated 6/13/2011 5:30:12 AM ET WASHINGTON — The Federal Bureau of Investigation is giving significant new powers to its roughly 14,000 agents, allowing them more leeway to search databases, go through household trash or use surveillance teams to scrutinize the lives of people who have attracted their attention. The F.B.I. soon plans to issue a new edition of its manual, called the Domestic Investigations and Operations Guide, according to an official who has worked on the draft document and several others who have been briefed on its contents. The new rules add to several measures taken over the past decade to give agents more latitude as they search for signs of criminal or terrorist activity. [More: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/13/us/13fbi.html?_r=1&hp ]

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F.B.I. agents get leeway to push privacy bounds