Report Alleges Obama Administration Tapped Intelligence Sources On Private Citizens, Trump Staff

During last year’s White House race, President Obama asked for information about Donald Trump’s campaign staff and thousands of other Americans, according to a government report released this week.

Breitbart News, citing a story by Circa, accused the former president of seeking intelligence concerning U.S. citizens that federal investigators incidentally obtained while compiling data about foreign suspects. Circa claimed that, according to a government official, the Americans included members of Trump’s campaign and presidential transition staffs.

“During his final year in office, President Obama’s team significantly expanded efforts to search National Security Agency intercepts for information about Americans, distributing thousands of intelligence reports across government with the unredacted names of U.S. residents during the midst of a divisive 2016 presidential election,” news site reported Thursday, explaining that the data came from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.

According to Circa, the revelation “provides the clearest evidence to date of how information accidentally collected by the NSA overseas about Americans was subsequently searched and disseminated after President Obama loosened privacy protections to make such sharing easier in 2011 in the name of national security.”

The report stated that federal officials did 30,355 searches last year, looking for the names, telephone numbers and email addresses of U.S. citizens mentioned in NSA “intercept metadata.” That was a 27.5 percent increase in searches from 2016, and “more than triple the 9,500 such searches that occurred in 2013, the first year such data was kept,” Circa reported. “The government in 2016 also scoured the actual contents of NSA intercepted calls and emails for 5,288 Americans, an increase of 13 percent over the prior year and a massive spike from the 198 names searched in 2013. The searches ultimately resulted in 3,134 NSA intelligence reports with unredacted U.S. names being distributed across government in 2016, and another 3,354 reports in 2015. About half the time, U.S. identities were unredacted in the original reports while the other half were unmasked after the fact by special request of Obama administration officials.”

Source: Breitbart
Photo: CNN

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