WASHINGTON, Nov. 11 —
A little-noticed measure approved by both the House and Senate would significantly expand the F.B.I.'s power to demand financial
records, without a judge's approval, from car dealers, travel agents, pawnbrokers and many other businesses, officials said
Traditional financial institutions like banks and credit unions are frequently
subject to administrative subpoenas from the Federal Bureau of Investigation to produce financial records in terrorism and
espionage investigations. Such subpoenas, which are known as national security letters, do not require the bureau to seek
a judge's approval before issuing them.
The measure now awaiting final approval in Congress would significantly broaden
the law ...
Critics said the measure would give the federal government greater power to
pry into people's private lives. ...
Copyright 2003 The New York Times