A group of bipartisan Senators and House Representatives have introduced legislation that would end the NSA’s mass surveillance of American phone records. The bill is titled: “Ending Mass Collection of Americans’ Phone Records Act” and will put an immediate end to the NSA collection of phone records. Curtailing the NSA’s overarching mass surveillance plans is good given that the NSA’s stated policy is that: “We must know everything.”
Senators Rand Paul (R-KY) and Ron Wyden (D-OR) introduced the bill to the Senate with support from House Representatives Justin Amash (R-MI 03) and Zoe Lofgren (D-CA 19) on March 28th, 2019. The full text of the bill is available here.
Ending NSA phone call surveillance should just be the beginning
Laila Abdelaziz, a campaigner at Fight for the Future commented on the FFTF site:
“This bill will once-and-for-all end the NSA’s ineffective and harmful mass surveillance of all of our phone records. It’s a welcome and necessary first-step in a longer fight to dismantle the U.S. government’s sprawling surveillance state.”
The mass collection of phone call and SMS records is just one of the mass surveillance programs revealed by Edward Snowden in 2013. Since the passage of the Patriot Act, the NSA’s worst mass surveillance programs have been kept under wraps due to national security letters and a secret court known as FISA. Since the passing of the Patriot Act, American’s phone use habits and capabilities have changed drastically and government surveillance programs have certainly evolved over the last decade. Last year, the Trump Administration kept Obama-era NSA upstream surveillance programs active despite massive uproar. Even if the “Ending Mass Collection of Americans’ Phone Records Act” doesn’t end all unconstitutional NSA mass surveillance, it is a crucial step to affirming to the American people that it is even possible for their elected politicians to reign in government abuses.