United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court

Foreign Intelligence Surveillance CourtFISA CourtFISCFISAU.S. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance CourtcourtForeign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrantForeign Secret Intelligence Court(FISA) Courta court
The United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC, also called the FISA Court) is a U.S. federal court established and authorized under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 (FISA) to oversee requests for surveillance warrants against foreign spies inside the United States by federal law enforcement and intelligence agencies.wikipedia
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Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act

FISAFISA warrantForeign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978
The United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC, also called the FISA Court) is a U.S. federal court established and authorized under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 (FISA) to oversee requests for surveillance warrants against foreign spies inside the United States by federal law enforcement and intelligence agencies.
The Act created the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) to oversee requests for surveillance warrants by federal law enforcement and intelligence agencies.

Federal judiciary of the United States

federal courtfederal courtsUnited States federal court
The United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC, also called the FISA Court) is a U.S. federal court established and authorized under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 (FISA) to oversee requests for surveillance warrants against foreign spies inside the United States by federal law enforcement and intelligence agencies.
The United States district courts (one in each of the 94 federal judicial districts, and three territorial courts) are general federal trial courts, although in certain cases Congress has diverted original jurisdiction to specialized courts, such as the Court of International Trade, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, the Alien Terrorist Removal Court, or to Article I or Article IV tribunals.

United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review

Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of ReviewUnited States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review (FISCR)Court of Review
If an application is denied by one judge of the court, the federal government is not allowed to make the same application to a different judge of the court, but may appeal to the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review.
The United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review (FISCR) is a U.S. federal court whose sole purpose is to review denials of applications for electronic surveillance warrants (called FISA warrants) by the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (or FISC).

James Robertson (judge)

James RobertsonJudge James Robertson
On December 20, 2005, Judge James Robertson resigned his position with the court, apparently in protest of the secret surveillance, and later, in the wake of the Snowden leaks of 2013, criticized the court-sanctioned expansion of the scope of government surveillance and its being allowed to craft a secret body of law.
Robertson also served on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court from 2002 until December 2005, when he resigned from that court in protest against warrantless wiretapping.

PRISM (surveillance program)

PRISMPRISM surveillance programPRISM program
A heavily redacted version of a 2008 appeal by Yahoo! of an order issued with respect to NSA's PRISM program had been published for the edification of other potential appellants. Glenn Greenwald, who published details of the PRISM surveillance program, explained:
The program is operated under the supervision of the U.S. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISA Court, or FISC) pursuant to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA).

National Security Agency

NSAArmed Forces Security AgencyNational Computer Security Center
Such requests are made most often by the National Security Agency (NSA) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
without explicit written legal permission from the United States Attorney General when the subject is located abroad, or the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court when within U.S. borders.

Robert F. Kennedy Department of Justice Building

Department of Justice BuildingDepartment of Justice HeadquartersDepartment of Justice
From its opening in 1978 until 2009, the court was housed on the sixth floor of the Robert F. Kennedy Department of Justice Building.
In 1978, the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) was established after the passage of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.

E. Barrett Prettyman United States Courthouse

E. Barrett Prettyman Federal CourthouseE. Barrett Prettyman U.S. Courthouse
Since 2009, the court has been relocated to the E. Barrett Prettyman United States Courthouse in Washington, D.C.
Barrett Prettyman Federal Courthouse''' is a historic building in Washington, D.C. It was built in 1949–50 and currently houses the United States District Court for the District of Columbia, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, and the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.

John Ashcroft

The Ashcroft GroupAshcroftJohn D. Ashcroft
On May 17, 2002, the court rebuffed Attorney General John Ashcroft, releasing an opinion that alleged that the FBI and Justice Department officials had "supplied erroneous information to the court" in more than 75 applications for search warrants and wiretaps, including one signed by FBI Director Louis J. Freeh.
One of its provisions, Section 215, allows the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to apply for an order from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to require production of "any tangible thing" for an investigation.

Glenn Greenwald

David MirandaGreat American HypocritesGreat American Hypocrites: Toppling the Big Myths of Republican Politics
Glenn Greenwald, who published details of the PRISM surveillance program, explained:
On June 5, 2013, Greenwald reported on the top-secret United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court order requiring Verizon to provide the National Security Agency with telephone metadata for all calls between the U.S. and abroad, as well as all domestic calls.

Global surveillance disclosures (2013–present)

2013 mass surveillance disclosuresglobal surveillance disclosures2013 global surveillance disclosures
On December 20, 2005, Judge James Robertson resigned his position with the court, apparently in protest of the secret surveillance, and later, in the wake of the Snowden leaks of 2013, criticized the court-sanctioned expansion of the scope of government surveillance and its being allowed to craft a secret body of law.
After the U.S. Foreign Secret Intelligence Court ruled in October 2011 that some of the NSA's activities were unconstitutional, the agency paid millions of dollars to major internet companies to cover extra costs incurred in their involvement with the PRISM surveillance program.

Colleen Kollar-Kotelly

Colleen Kollar-KottelyKollar-KotellyColleen Kollar Kotelly
Former FISC judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly, who provided the legal foundation for the NSA amassing a database of all Americans' phone records, told associates in the summer of 2013 that she wanted her legal argument out.
Colleen Kollar-Kotelly (born April 17, 1943) is a United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia and was Presiding Judge of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.

Telephone tapping

wiretapwiretappingwiretaps
That warrant orders Verizon Business Network Services to provide a daily feed to the NSA containing "telephony metadata" – comprehensive call detail records, including location data – about all calls in its system, including those that occur "wholly within the United States, including local telephone calls".
In the United States, under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, federal intelligence agencies can get approval for wiretaps from the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, a court with secret proceedings, or in certain circumstances from the Attorney General without a court order.

Nunes memo

controversial memocontroversial Republican memoDemocratic memo
These warrants were criticized in the controversial Nunes memo for allegedly being issued on the basis of evidence gathered by politically motivated sources.
The memo alleges that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) "may have relied on politically motivated or questionable sources" to obtain a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant in October 2016 and in three subsequent renewals on Trump adviser Carter Page in the early phases of the FBI's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 United States elections.

George W. Bush

BushPresident BushPresident George W. Bush
On December 16, 2005, The New York Times reported that the Bush administration had been conducting surveillance against U.S. citizens without specific approval from the FISA court for each case since 2002.
Later in 2007, the NSA launched a replacement for the program, referred to as PRISM, which was subject to the oversight of the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.

James E. Boasberg

James BoasbergJames Emanuel BoasbergJeb Boasberg
James Emanuel "Jeb" Boasberg (born February 20, 1963) is a United States District Judge on the United States District Court for the District of Columbia, also serving as a Judge on the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court; and former associate judge on the Superior Court of the District of Columbia.

Call detail record

call-detail recordCDRCall Data Record
That warrant orders Verizon Business Network Services to provide a daily feed to the NSA containing "telephony metadata" – comprehensive call detail records, including location data – about all calls in its system, including those that occur "wholly within the United States, including local telephone calls". In 2013, a top-secret order issued by the court, which was later leaked to the media from documents culled by Edward Snowden, required a subsidiary of Verizon to provide a daily, on-going feed of all call detail records—including those for domestic calls—to the NSA.
In June 2013, a top secret order of the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court was leaked to the public.

Skinner v. Railway Labor Executives Ass'n

Skinner v. Railway Labor Executives AssociationSkinner v. Railway Labor Executives' Assn.Skinner v. Railway Labor Executive Association
The U.S. Supreme Court has recognized an exemption to the Warrants Clause "outside the foreign intelligence context, in so-called 'special-needs' cases. In those cases, the Court excused compliance with the Warrant Clause when the purpose behind the governmental action went beyond routine law enforcement and insisting upon a warrant would materially interfere with the accomplishment of that purpose. See, Vernonia School District 47J v. Acton, 515 U.S. 646, 653 (1995) (upholding drug testing of highschool athletes and explaining that the exception to the warrant requirement applied "when special needs, beyond the normal need for law enforcement, make the warrant and probable-cause requirement[s] impracticable (quoting Griffin v. Wisconsin, 483 U.S. 868, 873 (1987))); Skinner v. Ry. Labor Execs. Ass'n, 489 U.S. 602, 620 (1989) (upholding regulations instituting drug and alcohol testing of railroad workers for safety reasons); cf.
The United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISA court) has used this ruling to expand the "special needs doctrine" that carves out an exception to the Fourth Amendment for the broad collection and examination of Americans' data to track possible terrorists.

Adam Schiff

Adam B. SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffCongressman Adam Schiff
Another proposal authored by Representative Adam Schiff of California would give the president the power to nominate judges for the court, subject to Senate approval, while Representative Steve Cohen proposed that Congressional leaders pick eight of the court's members.
Schiff has also introduced several bills aimed at reforming the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, including a bill to require outside counsel to be appointed to argue for privacy and civil liberties protections in certain cases before the Court.

Rosemary M. Collyer

Rosemary CollyerCollyer
Rosemary Mayers Collyer (born November 19, 1945) is a Senior United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia, and currently the Presiding Judge of the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.

September 11 attacks

9/11September 11, 2001 attacksSeptember 11, 2001
There has been growing criticism of the court since the September 11, 2001 attacks.
In response to requests by various intelligence agencies, the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court permitted an expansion of powers by the U.S. government in seeking, obtaining, and sharing information on U.S. citizens as well as non-U.S. people from around the world.

James Parker Jones

James P. JonesJames Jones
James Parker Jones (born July 3, 1940) is a United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia and a Judge of the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.

Anne C. Conway

Anne ConwayConway
She is also serving as a Judge on the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.

Michael W. Mosman

Michael Mosman
Michael Wise Mosman (born December 23, 1956) is the Chief United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the District of Oregon, and is simultaneously serving a 2013-2020 term on the FISA Court.