Research institute to review FBI's Carnivore

Research institute to review FBI's Carnivore

The Justice Department last week awarded a $175,000 contract to the IIT Research Institute of Chicago to perform an independent technical review of the FBI's controversial Carnivore e-mail filtering system.

The institute is a nonprofit R&D center associated with the Illinois Institute of Technology. The review team includes senior faculty members from the Chicago-Kent College of Law.

The institute will begin its review immediately and is supposed to finish by the end of the year. A report will be available for public comment, Justice officials said. An interim report, also available for public review, is scheduled for late November.

Total access

'The review team will have full access to any information they need to perform their review of the Carnivore system,' said assistant attorney general for administration Stephen R. Colgate, who led the selection team.

The institute will examine Carnivore's design, function and use, and will evaluate its performance in several scenarios.

The FBI developed the investigative tool so it could'in cooperation with an Internet service provider'collect information from e-mail and other electronic communications.

The filtering application's use requires a court order.

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