Deep Dive Episode 95 – Update on FISA Reauthorization and Reform
On March 15, 2020, certain authorities under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) will expire absent renewal by Congress. The authorities set to expire fall into three categories: 1) the business records provision (often referred to as Section 215) that allows for collection of call detail records, among other things; 2) roving wiretaps; and 3) the lone wolf provision. On March 11, the House passed a compromise bill that the Senate will soon consider. However, several Republican Senators have already urged President Trump to veto the reauthorization bill, should it pass both chambers.
This decision point comes at a time of heightened scrutiny, given the recent Department of Justice Inspector General report addressing the FBI’s use of FISA while investigating the 2016 presidential election and a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review order expressing “serious concerns about the accuracy and completeness” of the FBI’s FISA applications in that case. Please join us for a timely discussion of the mechanics and processes of FISA, recent controversies, and issues Congress will consider as it determines whether and how to renew these key provisions.