WASHINGTON (AP) — The Treasury Department's inspector general said Friday it is looking into allegations that a Treasury Department agency has been illegally looking at the private financial records of U.S. citizens.
Buzzfeed, a news website, is quoting unnamed government sources as saying that Treasury's Office of Intelligence and Analysis has "repeatedly and systematically violated domestic surveillance laws by snooping on the private financial records of U.S. citizens and companies."
Asked about the report, Rich Delmar, counsel to Treasury's Inspector General, said, "The issues referred to in the article are currently being reviewed as part of a Treasury OIG audit."
The Buzzfeed report said that over the past year, at least a dozen employees of the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, another branch of Treasury, had warned officials and Congress that the financial data was being illegally searched and stored.
Buzzfeed said some sources believed the intelligence breach may have extended to other intelligence agencies such as the National Security Agency. Buzzfeed said that NSA may have used Treasury's intelligence division as an illegal back door to gain access to American citizens' financial records.