Ellen Nakashima and Lisa Rein
Washington Post 
January 30, 2012
The Food and Drug Administration  secretly monitored the personal e-mail of a group of its own scientists and doctors after they warned Congress that the agency was approving medical devices that they believed posed unacceptable risks to patients, government documents show.
The surveillance — detailed in e-mails and memos  unearthed by six of the scientists and doctors, who filed a lawsuit against the FDA in U.S. District Court in Washington last week — took place over two years as the plaintiffs accessed their personal Gmail accounts from government computers.
Information garnered this way eventually contributed to the harassment or dismissal of all six of the FDA employees, the suit alleges. All had worked in an office responsible for reviewing devices for cancer screening and other purposes.
Copies of the e-mails  show that, starting in January 2009, the FDA intercepted communications with congressional staffers and draft versions of whistleblower complaints  complete with editing notes in the margins. The agency also took electronic snapshots of the computer desktops of the FDA employees and reviewed documents they saved on the hard drives of their government computers.