Historic changes in privacy law

After years of laws permitting more and more government surveillance of cell phone and email users' private communications, this week Congress finally passed a law setting limits, the USA Freedom Act. President Obama signed it yesterday.

Among other provisions, the law requires the government to seek judicial approval to search the data, which will no longer be held by the government. The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, which must approve governmental requests for surveillance, will operate in a more transparent manner and will in some cases receive adversary presentation (as opposed to its previous practice of hearing only the government's reason for seeking information and no argument in favor of protecting privacy).

The New York Times has the story.

0 thoughts on “Historic changes in privacy law

  1. Anonymous says:

    I’d hardly call passing the USA Freedom Act a win. Letting the Patriot Act sunset was a win. Now, instead of the government holding the surveillance data, phone/internet companies get to hold the surveillance data. At least the USA Freedom Act is an improvement over what we had before, although Congress could’ve just let the Patriot Act sunset without any replacement act.

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