I have a new post up at Just Security today. In it, I point to the fact that ongoing NSA revelations show that significant surveillance activities are taking place without either Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) or congressional oversight, even though these policies directly impact Americans’ privacy. For example, this past Sunday, the Washington Post reported that the National Security Agency gathers hundreds of millions of address books and contact lists from people around the world, including some Americans. Because the collection occurs in foreign countries, such as when Americans' data crosses international borders, it does not fit the FISA definition of "electronic surveillance", and neither the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) nor Congress oversee the program. Senator Dianne Feinstein, Chair of the Intelligence Committee, has ordered a review of all such foriegn surveillance programs. Its time for Congress to regulate these as well as NSA efforts to defeat encryption, so as to ensure oversight and accountability for the NSA's currently unregulated, yet dangerous, activities. Read more here.
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