ARGUMENT I. THE U.S. FOREST SERVICE VIOLATED THE PRIVACY ACT BY DISCLOSING PERSONNEL RECORDS THAT CONSITUTE A CLEARLY UNWARRANTED INVASION OF PERSONAL PRIVACY. Privacy matters, and Congress agreed: The Privacy Act’s purpose is “to provide certain safe guards against an invasion of personal privacy by requiring federal agencies . . . to . . . be subject to civil suit for any damages which . . . violates any individual’s rights under this act.” Law Review UGA (quoting another law review). Under 5 U.S.C. § 552a(g)(1)(D), an individual can bring a civil action against any agency that “fails to comply with any provision of this section.” 5 USC 552a. On the other hand, Congress also enacted the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to open government agencies to public scrutiny by disclosing certain desired documents. see 5 USC 552. As a privacy safe guard, FOIA lays out various exemptions that prevent disclosure of certain documents. See 5 USC 552. Exemption 6 applies here. Based on the language of the provision, “personnel. . . and similar files” whose disclosure would constitute a “clearly unwarranted invasion or Privacy” are exempt. 5 USC 552(b)(6). The U.S Supreme Court and D.C. Circuit Courts invoked a three-step-analysis to determine whether disclosure would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy. First, the court begins with a threshold question: are the documents “personnel” or “similar” files? Second, assuming the documents satisfy the
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As human beings and citizens of the world, everyone values their privacy. It is a right that is often looked over and taken for granted by most. Since the beginning of time, there have been concerns about individuals’ rights to privacy and their personal information remaining confidential. Our founding fathers had concerns about this which is why, “…this right has developed into
Privacy is, and should continue to be, a fundamental dimension of living in a free, democratic society. Laws protect “government, credit, communications, education, bank, cable, video, motor vehicle, health, telecommunications, children’s and financial information; generally carve out exceptions for disclosure of personal information; and authorize the use of warrants, subpoenas, and court orders to obtain the information.” (Protecting Individual Privacy in the Struggle Against Terrorists: A Framework for Program Assessment, 2008) This is where a lot of people feel as though they have their privacy violated. Most Americans are law-abiding citizens who do not commit illegal acts against the country, they want to go about their lives, minding their own business and not having to worry about outside interference. The fine line between privacy and National Security may not be so fine in everyone’s mind. While it is the job of government agencies to ensure the overall safety of the country and those living in it, the citizens that obey the law and do not do anything illegal often wonder why they are subject to any kind of search, when they can clearly point out, through documentation, that they have never done anything wrong.
a. In cases when the user has consented to content searching or monitoring of communications or data for personnel misconduct, law enforcement, or counterintelligence investigative searching, (i.e., for all communications and data other than privileged communications or data that are related to personal representation or services by attorneys, psychotherapists, or clergy, and their assistants), the U.S. Government may, solely at its discretion and in accordance with DoD policy, elect to apply a privilege or other restriction on the U.S. Government's otherwise-authorized use or disclosure of such information.
Based on this case, the nine Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) disclosure exemptions indicate the information that government agencies can withhold. For instance, documents which are “records or information compiled for law enforcement purpose” (Ciment, 2015). Exemption (7)(A) provides for the withholding of a law enforcement record the disclosure of which would reasonably be expected to interfere with enforcement proceedings. Furthermore, the 2002 law establishing the Department of Homeland Security gave that department
One section of the Patriot Act pertaining to the NSA surveillance revealed by Edward Snowden is an amendment to FISA Act of 1978, increasing surveillance authority by allowing the collection of "certain business records for foreign intelligence and international terrorism investigations" (“Uniting and Strengthening”). This gave the NSA and other intelligence agencies a broad authority to collect data from corporations. This has been “intentionally and willfully abused”, with some workers spying on lovers, ex-lovers, and others, “for practice”, “out of curiosity”, and other “reasons”. There have been no reported employee terminations due to this (Moyer).
6.26 Is it an invasion of privacy for a company to search the web for information by and about a job applicant? Interviewers are trained not to ask an applicant some kind of information (age, marital status, disabilities) to avoid charge of discrimination. Should there be legal restrictions on what kind of information about a candidate a company look at on web?
The Government should not be able to look through people’s personal information because it goes against the fourth amendment. An example of this is, “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized” (constituteproject web). The constitution states it is not right for
robust privacy protections already in place at DHS without risking exposure of personal data by: Enhancing DHS’s already robust Privacy Office to ensure the NCCIC complies with all civilian laws that protect Americans’ privacy and civil liberties. Requiring private companies to ‘scrub’ and remove personal information
Opening, The Patriot Act provides an easy excuse for governmental individuals to intrude on citizens' privacy. As "The USA PATRIOT Act: Preserving Life and Liberty," expresses, "Examining business records often provides the key that investigators are looking for to solve a wide range of crimes. Investigators might seek select records from hardware stores or chemical plants, for example, to find out who bought materials to make a bomb, or bank records to see who's sending money to terrorists. Law enforcement authorities have always been able to obtain business records in criminal cases through grand jury subpoenas, and continue to do so in national security cases where appropriate." The previous excerpt justifies the claim that the act is a
I have knowledge of laws, regulations, policies, provisions and application of the FOIA/PA and national security provisions through successfully completing USPS OIG annual mandatory trainings such as "Sexual Harassment and Prevention for Federal Employees" and "The No FEAR Act". Also, I have researched information found on USDA OIG, USDA, and Department of Justice websites for FOIA information.
The Freedom of Information Act was enforced when our government realized the importance of the relationship between access to information and government accountability. This act enables citizens to view a plethora of different files and records from government agencies. This act proved to be “a principal instrument for breaking down bureaucratic secrecy in American public administration” (p. 62).
The idea of law and order in this country isn’t a new one and, in fact, has taken a very long time to get to the point it is today. But it isn’t done changing or improving because with every new advancement and technology law must adapt to encompass these new gray areas and make them clear in the court of law. An example of a few large milestones in United States’ law that reflect such adaptability are the Federal Rules of Evidence; Federal Rules for Civil Procedure; and the Sedona Conference. Each of these milestones have made clear many issues and gray areas in the law. Issues in evidence collection and presenting as well as digital evidence collection are a few of the many subjects covered in these federal rules.
"Privacy. There seems to be no legal issue today that cuts so wide a swath through conflicts confronting American society: from AIDS tests to wiretaps, polygraph test to computerized data bases, the common denominator has been whether the right to privacy outweighs other concerns of society…" This quote from Robert Ellis Smith explains, in one sentence, the absolute need to ensure privacy in the workplace. One of the most interesting, yet controversial, areas concerning public personnel is employee privacy. What limits are there to employers’ intrusions into, and control over, employees’ behaviors and personal properties?
The Freedom of Information Act also known as President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Public Information Act into law on the fourth of July in 1966. “FOIA is a law that gives you the right to access information from the federal government. It is often described as the law that keeps citizens in the know about their government.” (foia.gov) The freedom of information act allows civilians in the United States to request information about the government, which is not readily available, online. The only things that cannot be requested are anything that has to deal with someone’s personal privacy, the national security of the country, or about law enforcement. For a person to make a request under the Freedom of Information Act, a person must go to the FOIA website and either fill out the form required or send an email to a person that works in the department you are attempting to get information