Boston bomb suspect's name was on classified government watch lists
Potential terrorists: FBI database holds more than half a million names / list is so vast that this did not
mean authorities automatically kept close tabs on him
The name of one of the Boston Marathon bombing suspects, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, was listed on the U.S. government's highly classified central database of people it views as potential terrorists. But the list is so vast that this did not mean authorities automatically kept close tabs on him, sources close to the bombing investigation said on Tuesday.
The sources said Tamerlan Tsarnaev's details were entered into TIDE, a database maintained by the National Counterterrorism Center, because the FBI spoke to him in 2011 while investigating a Russian tip-off that he had become a follower of radical Islamists.
The FBI found nothing to suggest he was an active threat, but all the same placed his name on the "Terrorist Identities Datamart Environment" list. The FBI has not said what it did find about Tsarnaev.
But the database, which holds more than half a million names, is only a repository of information on people who U.S. authorities see as known, suspected or potential terrorists from around the world.