On the eleventh day of September in the year 2001, the United States was attacked by terrorist and eventually, the Congress of the United States enacted the USA Patriot Act a month after (11th of October) the offensive action. The function of the document was to broaden the range of power of domestic investigators to track illegal activities.
Pros of the USA Patriot Act
- Agents and investigators are able to track the communication between potential terrorists. in this cases, terrorist activities are possible to be prevented. These allow investigators to pursue needed evidence of terrorism for verification. The Patriot act enforces three technique of monitoring private meetings and conversation among terrorists: telephone conversation, personal meetings, and exploiting electronic communications including email.
- Foreign intelligence is monitored by anti-terrorist agencies for the fact that the Patriot Act has given a way to pursue information about terrorists’ attacks. FBI has great flexibility in conducting relevant national surveillances that can be done by the easy access of voicemails and emails. Roving surveillance is one of the methods to locate the attackers even when they move from one place to another.
- The patriot act had bestowed great power to FBI or Federal Bureau of Investigation. This empowerment is under Section 215’s “Libraries provision” that authorizes FBI agents to get a hold of physical things such as files and records that is pertinent during anti-terrorism investigation. The advantage of this kind of surveillance is that the suspected potential terrorist will not be informed and therefore the investigation is concealed.
Cons of the USA Patriot Act
- Section 206 authorizes multiple wiretapping for roving surveillance of terrorist which was extensively enforced to national security agencies in which it is much possible to access the suspect’s overall communication. However, this condition badly influences and is against to the innocent parties’ privacy rights who are unknowingly interacting with the suspect under investigation.
- “lone wolf” was part of the Patriot Act in 2004. This anti-terrorism method applies only one terrorist that’s doing the crime. With such a individuality, the suspect is capable of joining large groups that may be a problem in catching the suspect and investigators might investigate the wrong person that puts innocent activists at risk.
- The Civil Libertarians have seen the capability of this act in breaking privacy rights and were therefore restricted with power of investigating under due process of law.
The patriot act was then partially reformed through reauthorization. After the death of Osama Laden in 2011, supporters of Patriot Act had requested a permanent reauthorization of the key provisions rather that issuing a renewal. It was then reauthorized and signed by president Barrack Obama on the twenty-fifth day of February 2011. The purpose of preserving the Act was to use it against the potential sudden attack from foreign or domestic terrorists.
How Do You Feel about the Patriot Act?
The Patriot act is the best way of maintaining and regulating national securities with their respective duty of protecting the citizen from harmful attempts of terrorists. After the reauthorization of this Act, FBI and anti-terrorist investigators acquires such power as they still preserve the privacy rights of people or factions that are encountering terrorists. If this is the case, a national peace and wellness is achieved.