Is The DOJ Using Obsolete Software To Subvert FOIA Requests?

“A new lawsuit alleges that the U.S. Department of Justice intentionally conducts inadequate searches of its records using a decades-old computer system when queried by citizens looking for records that should be available to the public,” reports The Guardian. Slashdot reader Bruce66423 writes:
An MIT PhD student has filed a suit in Federal court alleging that the use of a 21-year-old, IBM green screen controlled search software to search the Department of Justice databases…constitutes a deliberate failure to provide the data that should be being produced.

Ryan Shapiro’s lawsuit alleges “failure by design,” saying that the Justice Department records are inadequately indexed — and that they fail to search the full text of their records when responding to requests “When few or no records are returned, Shapiro said, the FBI effectively responds ‘sorry, we tried’ without making use of the much more sophisticated search tools at the disposal of internal requestors.” The FBI has a $425 million software system to handle FOIA requests, but refuses to use it, saying that would be “needlessly duplicative…and wasteful of Bureau resources.”


Share on Google+

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Clip to Evernote

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *