#cybersecurity | hacker | Bipartisan bill re-ups USA Freedom reauthorizations, aims at surveillance reform

House Tuesday introduced bipartisan legislation
that lawmakers touted as reforming the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance court
(FISC) based on recent recommendations from the Justice Department inspector
general (IG) and ends the government’s controversial domestic surveillance
program, but which detractors say doesn’t represent reform at all.

bill, USA Freedom Reauthorization Act, bumps up congressional oversight of the
FISC and imposed penalties on those found using FISC process for political
gain. The act also requires transcripts of goings-on in the court. Three
surveillance authorizations in the existing agreement were set to expire March

Calling the
Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA)
“one of the most complicated, technical statutes” Congress handles and which
needs more reform than the new bill provides, Rep. Jerry  Nadler, D-N.Y., said
“some measure of surveillance is necessary to keep our country safe.” Nadler
warned that “left unchecked, however, the executive branch is all too willing
to unleash its considerable surveillance capabilities on the American people.”

Nadler said it was up to
Congress, “to provide that critical check—to claw back authorities that go too
far, and to press for changes that protect our civil liberties to the maximum
extent possible” and that USA FREEDOM Reauthorization Act, H.R. 6172, “is one
step in that ongoing project.”

He hailed
the bill for ending “NSA’s call detail records program, which began as
part of a secret and unlawful surveillance project” about 20 years ago.

bill before us represents real reform to the FISA program,” said Rep. Jim
Jordan. “These reforms have long been necessary but have been especially
warranted in recent years, given the FBI spying on the Trump campaign affiliate
Carter Page.”

the bill came out of the Rules Committee, Christopher Anders, ACLU deputy political
director, said it fell short. “After weeks of huffing and puffing over
FISA surveillance abuses, Congress has delivered yet another half-measure and
is now trying to jam it through with little debate and no amendments,” Anders
said. “With only minimal improvements over current law, the reforms in this
backroom deal fall far short of what is needed to protect our privacy rights. Secret
courts still can issue secret orders and the federal government can “continue
spying on Americans without the kind of oversight and adversarial process that
all Americans should expect of our government and our courts,” he said. “If
President Trump wants to do right by Carter Page and all Americans, he should
demand surveillance reforms that at minimum afford Americans their most basic
due process rights.”

ACLU sent a letter
to the House urging lawmakers to reject the legislation. Calling the
U.S. surveillance laws broken, the ACLU National Political Director Ronald Newman
and Senior Legislative Counsel Neena Singh Guliani, said the proposed
legislation fails to require individuals receive appropriate notice and access
to information when FISA information is used against them, fully address those
shortcomings that led to illegal surveillance, limit the types of information that
can be collected or raise the standard for collection under Section 215 or
appropriately limit retention of that information.

“It is
by no means a perfect bill,” Nadler acknowledged. “There are many other changes
to FISA that I would have liked to have seen here—but this bill includes
important reforms.”

Original Source link

Leave a Reply

Shqip Shqip አማርኛ አማርኛ العربية العربية English English Français Français Deutsch Deutsch Português Português Русский Русский Español Español

National Cyber Security Consulting App







National Cyber Security Radio (Podcast) is now available for Alexa.  If you don't have an Alexa device, you can download the Alexa App for free for Google and Apple devices.