Researcher and Writer in Washington, DC

Posts in category Privacy

Yes, the Government Can Open Your Mail Without a Warr...

Yes, the Government Can Open Your Mail Without a Warrant

By law, first-class mail is sealed against inspection, meaning that government officials may not open it without first getting a warrant from a judge. A citizen would be forgiven for imagining that this law ensures his or her mail is private, but that’s not quite true. For one thing, other classes of mail do not […]

Mail Surveillance: The Time For Secrecy Has Pas...

Mail Surveillance: The Time For Secrecy Has Passed

Recent news that federal authorities approved 49,000 instances of mail surveillance in 2013 is disturbing. Not only was this a huge jump from the usual average number of 8,000 annual approvals, but according to the Postal Service’s Inspector General, more than one-fifth of the surveillance requests from law enforcement agencies were inappropriately approved… (read more)

The Postal Service Surveillance Controversy: Questions Need Answe...

The Postal Service Surveillance Controversy: Questions Need Answered

It is not just the National Security Agency that is keeping a close eye on the public. The Postal Service helped law enforcement authorities surveil nearly 50,000 individuals and groups this past year, according to the New York Times. Under the “mail cover” program, which has been around for roughly a century, law enforcement officials […]

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