The CLDC is encouraging activists and organizations to utilize the Freedom of Information Act and the Privacy Act to request documents and materials that the FBI may have accumulated about you or the group you are active in. Not only will this information assist activist communities in learning about and preventing unlawful government spying, but it will also shed light on the extent of surveillance that has been undertaken in your community. Shine a light on FBI activities by exercising your lawful right to these documents and information.
There have been several high profile activists who have recently received thousands of pages of invaluable information regarding FBI surveillance and spying activities used to violate their privacy rights. Check out the New York Times article about Austin, TX activist Scott Crow and his successful attempt at finding out whether he was paranoid or spied upon by the FBI: “For Anarchist, Details of Life as F.B.I. Target,” Colin Moynihan and Scott Shane, May 28, 2011.
Read the information and directions we’ve put together so that you and your friends can sit around and read your FBI files. Fun for the whole family!
We have provided FBI request templates to assist you in making your request correctly (they are bureaucrats after all)–one template is used to request your personal file and we included some language in case you also want to request records about an organization you are affiliated with (i.e. Lauren Regan and Civil Liberties Defense Center). The other template can be used if you only want to request records pertaining to an organization or event, but do not want personal records. Finally, if you want your FBI rap sheet, there is an entirely different process to undertake, and we’ve given you directions and the FBI website where you will need to download their application form.
Good luck, happy reading, and please let us know about your experience!