Saturday, February 21, 2015

Obama refuses to stop the NSA telephone record program, despite the recommendation of his own Board

“The Administration has not implemented the [Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight] Board’s recommendation to halt the NSA’s telephone records program, which it could do at any time without congressional involvement. Instead, the Administration has continued the program, with modifications, while seeking legislation to create a new system for government access to telephone records under Section 215.”

The Board stated, "the Administration can end the bulk telephone records program at any time, without congressional involvement." EPIC [Electronic Privacy Information Center] and a broad coalition have repeatedly urged the President end the NSA's bulk record collection program. Previously, EPIC petitioned the Supreme Court, with the support of dozens of legal experts, arguing that the NSA program was unlawful. (Jan. 30, 2015)

The PCLOB is an independent agency within the executive branch established by the Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007. The bipartisan, five-member Board is appointed by the President and confirmed by the Senate. By statute, the Chairman serves full time, but the four other Board members serve in their positions part-time. The PCLOB’s mission is to ensure that the federal government’s efforts to prevent terrorism are balanced with the need to protect privacy and civil liberties.​

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