Washington (AP) A new report from the justice department says the FBI improperly obtained personal information about U.S. citizens while investigating terrorism as recently as 2006.
The report notes that the agency has taken steps since then to prevent future privacy abuses.
The long-anticipated audit is being released today. It's expected to show that for the fourth year in a row, FBI agents used so-called national security letters to improperly gain access to phone, e-mail and financial records.
National security letters, as outlined in an anti-terror legislation, are administrative subpoenas for information that do not require a court order.
An audit last year estimated that the FBI had underreported to congress the number of such letters requested by more than 4,500.