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US ready to give spy agencies full access to financial records - Reuters

14 March 2013  |  3991 views  |  0 Washington Capitol hill

The US government is drawing up plans that would give the country's spy agencies full access to a database containing details on all suspicious customer activity reported by banks, according to Reuters.

Under US law, banks that operate in the US have to file reports on suspicious activity on accounts, such as large money transfers to the Treasury's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN).

The FBI already has full access to the database to help it fight things such as money laundering, organised crime and terrorist financing. Currently though, other agencies, such as the CIA and National Security Agency, have to make case-by-case requests for access.

According to a Treasury document seen by Reuters, this is could be set to change, enabling the agencies to sift through raw data - banks file more than 15 million suspicious activity reports a year - looking for patterns.

The document, dated 4 March, shows that the plan is still in its early stages. It is not clear when it will be implemented.

US to let spy agencies scour Americans' finances - Reuters

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