Cell site simulator usage (DHS, ICE, CBP) (United States Customs and Border Protection)

Tanvi Misra filed this request with the United States Customs and Border Protection of the United States of America.
Tracking #

CBP-2022-062199

Multi Request Cell site simulator usage (DHS, ICE, CBP)
Due April 28, 2022
Est. Completion None
Status
Awaiting Response

Communications

From: Tanvi Misra

To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, I hereby request the following records:

1) Any policy directives, guidance, documents, memoranda, training materials, or similar records created between 2019 and 2022 concerning use of cell site simulators by Immigrations and Customs Enforcement and Customs and Border Protection agents, employees, or partners, including any policy or guidance document that cites Department of Homeland Security Policy Directive 047-02 (“Department Policy Regarding Use of Cell- Site Simulator Technology”) as well as any communications with Congress concerning implementation of or updates to DHS Policy Directive 047-02 and other policies governing cell site simulator use;

2. Any records reflecting use of cell site simulators by ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations for the enforcement of civil immigration law between 2013 and 2022, or any documents that dictate how DHS Policy Directive 047-02 applies to uses of cell site simulators in civil enforcement situations;

3. From Jan 1, 2019 to the present, annual records reflecting the total number of times a cell site simulator has been deployed in the jurisdiction of each field office, the numbers of deployments at the request of other agencies, and the number of times the technology is deployed in emergency circumstances (collection of this information is required by DHS Policy Directive 047-02);

4. All applications submitted to state and federal courts since January 1, 2019 for orders or search warrants authorizing the use of cell site simulators in ICE and CBP investigations or operations (including investigations or operations as part of task forces or partnerships with other agencies), as well as any warrants or orders, denials of warrants or orders, and returns of warrants associated with those applications. If any responsive records are sealed, please provide the date, court, and docket number for each sealed document;

5. All requests to persons or offices within the Department of Homeland Security for supervisory or legal authorization to deploy cell site simulators.

Pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, I hereby request records between 2019 and 2022 on Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Customs and Border Protection’s usage of “stingray” or TK technology.

BACKGROUND

In 2020, The American Civil Liberties Union published more than a thousand pages of record obtained through FOIA from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) about their purchase and use of “Stingrays” — also known as “cell site simulators” or “IMSI catchers” — which is technology used to track and locate cell phones.

The ACLU initially submitted its FOIA request to ICE and Customs and Border Protection (CBP) in 2017, after the Detroit News reported on a case where ICE used a cell site simulator to locate and arrest an individual on immigration-related charges. Among other things, the documents revealed that that ICE used cell site simulators at least 466 times between 2017 to 2019. This requests seeks updated information on ICE’s use of stingray technology.

Department of Homeland Security issued guidance (Policy Directive 047-02) regarding the use of cell site simulator technology on October 19, 2015; and updated the guidance on August 31, 2017.

I request this information in the public interest in my capacity as an investigative journalist working with journalism nonprofit Type Investigations and with previous articles published in The Guardian, NBC News, The Article, Bloomberg, The New Republic and other major national and international publications.

I attest that the requested documents will be made available to the general public, and and this request is not being made for commercial purposes. Should the volume of the records be significant, I request that you release them on a rolling basis.

The requested documents will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 20 business days, as the statute requires.

Sincerely,

Tanvi Misra

From: United States Customs and Border Protection

This message is to confirm your request submission to the FOIAonline application: View Request. Request information is as follows: (https://foiaonline.gov/foiaonline/action/public/submissionDetails?trackingNumber=CBP-2022-062199&type=request)

* Tracking Number: CBP-2022-062199
* Requester Name:
Tanvi Misra
* Date Submitted: 04/04/2022
* Request Status: Submitted
* Description:
To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, I hereby request the following records:

1) Any policy directives, guidance, documents, memoranda, training materials, or similar records created between 2019 and 2022 concerning use of cell site simulators by Immigrations and Customs Enforcement and Customs and Border Protection agents, employees, or partners, including any policy or guidance document that cites Department of Homeland Security Policy Directive 047-02 (“Department Policy Regarding Use of Cell- Site Simulator Technology”) as well as any communications with Congress concerning implementation of or updates to DHS Policy Directive 047-02 and other policies governing cell site simulator use;

2. Any records reflecting use of cell site simulators by ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations for the enforcement of civil immigration law between 2013 and 2022, or any documents that dictate how DHS Policy Directive 047-02 applies to uses of cell site simulators in civil enforcement situations;

3. From Jan 1, 2019 to the present, annual records reflecting the total number of times a cell site simulator has been deployed in the jurisdiction of each field office, the numbers of deployments at the request of other agencies, and the number of times the technology is deployed in emergency circumstances (collection of this information is required by DHS Policy Directive 047-02);

4. All applications submitted to state and federal courts since January 1, 2019 for orders or search warrants authorizing the use of cell site simulators in ICE and CBP investigations or operations (including investigations or operations as part of task forces or partnerships with other agencies), as well as any warrants or orders, denials of warrants or orders, and returns of warrants associated with those applications. If any responsive records are sealed, please provide the date, court, and docket number for each sealed document;

5. All requests to persons or offices within the Department of Homeland Security for supervisory or legal authorization to deploy cell site simulators.

Pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, I hereby request records between 2019 and 2022 on Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Customs and Border Protection’s usage of “stingray” or TK technology.

BACKGROUND

In 2020, The American Civil Liberties Union published more than a thousand pages of record obtained through FOIA from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) about their purchase and use of “Stingrays” — also known as “cell site simulators” or “IMSI catchers” — which is technology used to track and locate cell phones.

The ACLU initially submitted its FOIA request to ICE and Customs and Border Protection (CBP) in 2017, after the Detroit News reported on a case where ICE used a cell site simulator to locate and arrest an individual on immigration-related charges. Among other things, the documents revealed that that ICE used cell site simulators at least 466 times between 2017 to 2019. This requests seeks updated information on ICE’s use of stingray technology.

Department of Homeland Security issued guidance (Policy Directive 047-02) regarding the use of cell site simulator technology on October 19, 2015; and updated the guidance on August 31, 2017.

I request this information in the public interest in my capacity as an investigative journalist working with journalism nonprofit Type Investigations and with previous articles published in The Guardian, NBC News, The Article, Bloomberg, The New Republic and other major national and international publications.

I attest that the requested documents will be made available to the general public, and and this request is not being made for commercial purposes. Should the volume of the records be significant, I request that you release them on a rolling basis.

The requested documents will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 20 business days, as the statute requires.

Sincerely,

Tanvi Misra

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From: United States Customs and Border Protection

Tanvi Misra
MuckRock News DEPT MR 126988
411A Highland Ave
Somerville, MA, 02144-2516
04/05/2022
CBP-2022-062199
Dear Tanvi Misra:
This notice acknowledges receipt of your Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) received on 04/04/2022 requesting the following:
* Any policy directives, guidance, documents, memoranda, training materials, or similar records created between 2019 and 2022 concerning use of cell site simulators by Immigrations and Customs Enforcement and Customs and Border Protection agents, employees, or partners, including any policy or guidance document that cites Department of Homeland Security Policy Directive 047-02 (“Department Policy Regarding Use of Cell- Site Simulator Technology”) as well as any communications with Congress concerning implementation of or updates to DHS Policy Directive 047-02 and other policies governing cell site simulator use;

* Any records reflecting use of cell site simulators by ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations for the enforcement of civil immigration law between 2013 and 2022, or any documents that dictate how DHS Policy Directive 047-02 applies to uses of cell site simulators in civil enforcement situations;

* From Jan 1, 2019 to the present, annual records reflecting the total number of times a cell site simulator has been deployed in the jurisdiction of each field office, the numbers of deployments at the request of other agencies, and the number of times the technology is deployed in emergency circumstances (collection of this information is required by DHS Policy Directive 047-02);

* All applications submitted to state and federal courts since January 1, 2019 for orders or search warrants authorizing the use of cell site simulators in ICE and CBP investigations or operations (including investigations or operations as part of task forces or partnerships with other agencies), as well as any warrants or orders, denials of warrants or orders, and returns of warrants associated with those applications. If any responsive records are sealed, please provide the date, court, and docket number for each sealed document;

Please use the following unique FOIA tracking number CBP-2022-062199 to track the status of your request.  If you have not already done so, you must create a FOIAonline account at https://foiaonline.gov.  This is the only method available to check the status of your pending FOIA request. (https://foiaonline.regulations.gov/)
Provisions of the Act allow us to recover part of the cost of complying with your request.  We shall charge you for records in accordance with the DHS FOIA regulations outlined on the DHS website, https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2016/11/22/2016-28095/freedom-of-information-act-regulations. By submitting your request, you have agreed to pay up to $25.00 in applicable processing fees, if any fees associated with your request exceed this amount, CBP shall contact you; however, the first 100 pages are free. (https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2016/11/22/2016-28095/freedom-of-information-act-regulations)
Due to the increasing number of FOIA requests received by this office, we may encounter some delay in processing your request.  Consistent with 6 C.F.R. Part 5 § 5.5(a) of the DHS FOIA regulations, CBP processes FOIA requests according to their order of receipt.  Although CBP’s goal is to respond within 20 business days of receipt of your request, FOIA does permit a 10-day extension of this time period in certain circumstances pursuant to 6 C.F.R. Part 5 § 5.5(c).  [As your request seeks documents that will require a thorough and wide-ranging search, CBP will invoke a 10-day extension for your request pursuant to 6 C.F.R. Part 5 § 5.5(c). If you would like to narrow the scope of your request, please contact our office.  We will make every effort to comply with your request in a timely manner.] OR [As your request seeks a voluminous amount of separate and distinct records, CBP will invoke a 10-day extension for your request pursuant to  6 C.F.R. Part 5 § 5.5(c).  If you would like to narrow the scope of your request, please contact our office.  We will make every effort to comply with your request in a timely manner.] OR [As the subject matter of your request is of substantial interest to two or more components of CBP or of substantial interest to another agency, we will need to consult with those entities before we issue a final response.  Due to these unusual circumstances, CBP will invoke a 10-day extension for your request pursuant to 6 C.F.R. Part 5 § 5.5(c). If you would like to narrow the scope of your request, please contact our office.  We will make every effort to comply with your request in a timely manner.]
CBP’s FOIA Division is working hard to reduce the amount of time necessary to respond to FOIA requests.  We truly appreciate your continued patience.
For additional information please consult CBP FOIA website please click on FOIA Act Resources or visit (http://www.cbp.gov/site-policy-notices/foia) http://www.cbp.gov/site-policy-notices/foia. (http://www.cbp.gov/site-policy-notices/foia)
Sincerely,
U.S. Customs and Border Protection

From: United States Customs and Border Protection

Your request for Fee Waiver for the FOIA request CBP-2022-062199 has been
fully granted.

* Fee Waiver Original Justification:
I request this information in the public interest in my capacity as an investigative journalist working with journalism nonprofit Type Investigations and with previous articles published in The Guardian, NBC News, The Article, Bloomberg, The New Republic and other major national and international publications.
* Fee Waiver Disposition Reason:
N/A

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