Government surveillance of foreigners has constantly led to unmasking of U.S. lawmakers and their staffers and their identities shared with other government agencies, the Gateway Pundit reports.
This is happening so routinely that Congress receives notification at least once a month. These alerts are known as Gates notifications, and are received by members of the so-called Gang of Eight in Capitol Hill, according to Circa.
The Gang of Eight includes the leaders of both parties in the Senate, the House speaker and minority leader, and the Republican and Democratic heads of intelligence committees in the Senate and House.
Most of the time, however, the unmasked lawmakers or congressional aides do not know about the surveillance, unless it’s a hacking threat or national security concern. They may not be aware that their names could appear in unredacted intelligence reports that the executive branch receives.
Although the NSA is authorized to spy on foreigners without a FISA warrant, it is prohibited from targeting American citizens when doing so.