The F.B.I. cast a much wider net in its terrorism investigations than it has previously acknowledged by relying on telecommunications companies to analyze phone-call patterns of the associates of Americans who had come under suspicion, according to newly obtained bureau records.The documents indicate that the Federal Bureau of Investigation used secret demands for records to obtain data not only on individuals it saw as targets but also details on their “community of interest” — the network of people that the target was in contact with. The bureau stopped the practice early this year in part because of broader questions raised about its aggressive use of the records demands, which are known as national security letters, officials said.
Germans Say U.S. Officials Helped to Foil Bombing Plot
The discovery of a plot to detonate powerful bombs in Germany this week was a result of close cooperation between American and German security officials, with intelligence passing back and forth between the two sides, German officials said Saturday. American intelligence was instrumental in first bringing the foiled plot to the attention of German intelligence and law enforcement officials, according to German and American officials.Interceptions of e-mail messages and telephone calls between Germany and both Pakistan and Turkey raised the initial red flags last year, they said. But the Americans also wanted to protect their sources, a German intelligence official said, which meant that the earliest warnings were vague.
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