US court filings show that no-fly list uses predictive assessments instead of hard evidence
In May 2015, the US Department of Justice and the FBI submitted a declaration to an Oregon federal judge stating that the US government's no-fly lists and broader watchlisting system relied on predictive judgements of individuals rather than records of actual offences. The documents were filed as part of a longstanding case brought by the American Civil Liberties Union, which claimed that the government did not provide steps individuals could take to get off the blacklists and that the process by which people were added to the blacklists was not scientifically validated and therefore unreliable. As a result of the case, the Department of Homeland Security began information people they were on the blacklist, and allowing them to file for redress. However, the Obama administration balked at providing further detail on how the blacklists worked on the basis that doing so would jeopardise national security.
Writer: Spencer Ackerman