CIA Mum Regarding Surveillance of U.S. Senate


WASHINGTON (CN) – The Electronic Privacy Information Center sued the CIA for records on the agency’s spying on the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee’s computer network.
     The complaint recounts events leading up to Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., accusing the CIA of secretly removing documents from the Intelligence Committee, searching its computers and trying to intimidate congressional investigators.
     The Committee has been investigating the CIA’s detention and interrogation program.
     CIA agents searched a walled-off computer in Langley provided for the Committee to help its investigation, according to the federal FOIA complaint.
     CIA Director John Brennan denied the charges, but the CIA inspector general concluded that the agency had indeed accessed Senate computers.
     “Senator Ron Wyden, who also sits on the Intelligence committee, remarked that ‘The CIA inspector general has confirmed what senators have been saying all along: The CIA conducted an unauthorized search of Senate files, and attempted to have Senate staff prosecuted for doing their jobs. Director Brennan’s claims to the contrary were simply not true,'” the complaint states.
     It adds: “On July 31, 2014, the CIA released a one-page summary of the Inspector General’s report. This summary does not include essential details, for instance: the level of seniority of the agency officials who accessed the Committee computers, the number of times the computers were accessed, specifically what files or documents were accessed, what was done with the improperly accessed data from the computers, and what remedies the Inspector General recommends.”
     EPIC says it asked the CIA for “all final reports on the CIA Inspector General regarding the CIA’s involvement in the penetration of the Senate Intelligence Committee’s computer network” and “executive summaries and related investigatory documents.”
     The group says 41 days have passed and the agency has failed to respond, prompting its lawsuit.
     EPIC wants the court to order the CIA to respond to its request and release all responsive records.
     EPIC is represented by Ginger McCall.

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