House votes bill to ban NSA’s mass collection of data

On May 13, 2015, the House of Representatives passed Bill H.R.2048, the USA FREEDOM Act of 2015, with 338 to 88 votes. The Bill would amend the investigative and surveillance authority of the United States government.

The bill would modify the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) to prohibit bulk collection of records under Section 215 of the USA PATRIOT Act. According to the Committee report, H.R. 2048 would require, among other things, the designation of at least five amici curiae to assist the court when the government makes an application under FISA that presents a novel or significant interpretation of FISA. Second, the bill would limit the collection of telephone call records requiring intelligence agencies to seek additional warrants to access such data. Finally, the bill would require federal agencies to conduct several program assessments and reviews, establishing new reporting requirements.

The Bill still needs Senate and Presidential approval to become law but the House vote is a big step.

The news comes right after a federal court ruled that NSA’s bulk collection of phone records is illegal because not based on Section 215 of the Patriot Act (see here).

Information about the Bill is available at…

NSA’s spy powers limited by a recent federal court’s ruling |  Technethics

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