New FBI Surveillance Rules Allow Agents More Freedom

The FBI plans to change its surveillance rules to give agents more freedom in their investigations of suspects and informants.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) plans to release new surveillance rules, which would give agents more freedom in their investigations of both suspects and informants. The new rules would make it easier for agents to administer lie-detector tests and dig through trash, among other things.

“I would call these minor tweaks based on feedback from agents in the field who began operating under the original (rules)… Not sweeping new powers,” the FBI said in a statement quoted by a article.

However, the article said the new rules would allow agents to investigate informants with many of the same methods previously used to investigate only suspects.

“One of the changes would allow agents to look up people on various databases without opening up a low-level inquiry known as an ‘assessment.’ Currently, agents have to take that formal step before looking into someone’s background,” the article read.

“In addition, the new rules reportedly would allow agents to use surveillance squads multiple times during the ‘assessment’ phase. Currently, those teams can only be used once during that phase.”

Personal Liberty

Special To Personal Liberty

You Sound Off! is written by our readers and appears the last Wednesday of each month. If you would like to submit an article or letter to the editor for consideration for You Sound Off!, send it to by the Friday before the last Wednesday of the month. To be considered, a submission should be 750 words or less and must include the writer's name, address and a telephone number. Only the writer's name will be published. Anonymous submissions will not be considered.

Join the Discussion

Comment Policy: We encourage an open discussion with a wide range of viewpoints, even extreme ones, but we will not tolerate racism, profanity or slanderous comments toward the author(s) or comment participants. Make your case passionately, but civilly. Please don't stoop to name calling. We use filters for spam protection. If your comment does not appear, it is likely because it violates the above policy or contains links or language typical of spam. We reserve the right to remove comments at our discretion.