U.S. Terror Watchlist Hits a Million
by William Fisher
7 May 09 | IPS
Hundreds of thousands of people are being wrongly identified because of the government’s wasteful and inefficient management of the nation’s one million-strong terrorist watchlist, according to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).
The organisation cited a recent report by the Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General (OIG), which found that the part of the watchlist maintained by the Federal Bureau of Investigation may contain a 35 percent error rate.
The audit also revealed that large portions of the list have no formal processes for updating or removing records.
The ACLU says the audit “confirms that the nation’s watchlist system is massively broken.”
The audit confirmed estimates that the terror watchlist contains 1.1 million names as of December 2008, and that many of them are out of date.
OIG auditors reviewed 68,669 of those identities and found 24,000 out of date. In a closer inspection of the out of date records, the auditors found a majority of this sample did not belong on a watchlist. >>>