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AP IMPACT: NYPD keeps secret intelligence files on city Muslims who change their names
NEW YORK (AP) ' The Associated Press has learned that the New York Police Department maintains secret intelligence files on Muslims who change their names.
That means Muslims who Americanize their names, like generations of immigrants have done, may come under police scrutiny along with Muslim converts who take Arabic names.
The program was conceived as a tripwire for police in the hunt for homegrown terrorists, where there are no widely agreed upon warning signs. Like other NYPD intelligence programs created in the past decade, police monitored behavior protected by the First Amendment.
An AP investigation has revealed that the NYPD conducted surveillance of entire neighborhoods, chronicling every aspect of daily life, including where people eat, pray and shop.
The NYPD did not respond to messages over two days seeking comment.