The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) --
U.S.C. § 1809
Congress has enacted comprehensive legislation governing electronic
surveillance. In 1968, Congress passed Title III of the Omnibus Crime
and Safe Streets Act of 1968, 18 U.S.C. § 2510 et seq. In 1978,
Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 ("FISA"), 50 U.S.C.
et seq., was enacted. In 1986, Congress passed the Electronic
Communications Privacy Act of 1986 ("1986 Act"), Public Law No. 99-508,
substantially revised Title III to provide coverage for the technological
advances developed in the area of electronic communications since the
the original act. Minor amendments have since been made to the 1986 Act.|
These statutes share several common characteristics. Both Title
and FISA prescribe authorization procedures which must be followed before
electronic surveillance can be conducted. Compare 18 U.S.C.
2516 to 2517 with 50 U.S.C. §§ 1802 to 1805. These
include judicial approval of surveillance applications; minimization of
interceptions by surveilling officials; and limitations on the use of
information. Moreover, both statutes impose civil and criminal sanctions on
unauthorized surveillance activities. Compare 18 U.S.C.
(criminal penalties) and 2520 (civil sanctions) with 50 U.S.C.
§§ 1809 (criminal penalties) and 1810 (civil sanctions).
other hand, one court has distinguished between these regimes, holding that
regulates both aural and visual electronic surveillance conducted for
intelligence purposes, and [Title III] regulates aural electronic
conducted for domestic purposes." United States v. Koyomejian, 970
536, 540 (9th Cir.) (en banc), cert. denied, 506 U.S. 1005 (1992).
[cited in USAM 9-60.400]