USA PATRIOT Act has enabled many of the FBI's key post-9/11
improvements in counterterrorism, intelligence, and information
sharing. Without it, the institutions we rely on daily
to perform our counterterrorism mission - the National
Counterterrorism Center, the Terrorist Screening Center,
and the Joint Terrorism Task Forces - would face significant
challenges. Our national counterterrorism strategy, which
integrates the use of intelligence and law enforcement
tools to prevent attacks, would be unworkable.
Act allows a new approach to investigations and intelligence
Patriot Act removed legal barriers that made it difficult
to share information between criminal investigations
on the one hand and counterterrorism and counterintelligence
investigations on the other.
example, prior to the Patriot Act, in any investigation
in which we contemplated using wiretaps in terrorism
and espionage investigations (pursuant to Foreign Intelligence
Surveillance Act), coordination between law enforcement
and intelligence personnel was prohibited. Thanks to
the Patriot Act, criminal investigators and intelligence
agents can now share the information they collect about
terrorists and spies and employ these national security
wiretaps while we also use the criminal investigative
Patriot Act also modified the rules governing handling
of information obtained through a grand jury or wiretaps
in criminal investigations, so that we can more easily
share foreign intelligence information obtained through
these criminal investigative tools with partners in
the U.S. Intelligence Community.
Act helps us adapt to new technologies
the Patriot Act, many of our investigative tools did
not account for new communications technologies like
e-mail, voicemail, and cell phones, leaving loopholes
that terrorists could exploit. The Patriot Act made
some common sense changes to adapt existing authorities
to new technologies.
the Act, law enforcement could get court authorization
for a "roving wiretap" to track a drug dealer
who switched from one cell phone to another, but we
could not get a similar authority to track terrorists.
Now we can.
so-called pen register/trap and trace statute allows
us to collect non-content information about a communication,
such as the numbers dialed on a telephone. The Act updates
this statute to account for Internet communications.
Patriot Act gives us new tools to help track sources of
often make use of informal systems to transfer funds
in a manner that is difficult to trace. The Patriot
Act makes it illegal to run an unlicensed foreign money
Act strengthened the existing ban on providing material
support to terrorists and enhanced our authority to
seize terrorists assets.
Patriot Act established stricter rules for foreign accounts
in U.S. banks, and required securities brokers and dealers
and certain cash businesses to file Suspicious Activity
Reports for a wider range of financial transactions.
Protecting civil liberties
has not been a single verified abuse of any of the Act's
Act was reauthorized and additional safeguards added