The secretive court that rules on the legality of NSA domestic surveillance programs has members holding stakes in the telecommunications companies affected by the court’s decisions. This conflict of interest poses a serious risk to the actual and perceived impartiality of the shadowy court.
|By: DSWright Monday July 28, 2014 12:12 pm|
|By: Kevin Gosztola Monday June 16, 2014 4:14 pm|
A federal appeals court has overturned a first-of-its-kind ruling by a district court, which had granted a defendant access to secret surveillance records in his case. The court found the district court judge had “disobeyed” a statute and inappropriately decided to disclose materials to defense counsel.
|By: Kevin Gosztola Friday May 2, 2014 8:31 am|
Over the past months, President Barack Obama’s administration, especially Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, have postured themselves as being committed to some newfound level of government transparency in the aftermath of NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden’s disclosures. The administration has significantly sought to downplay the fact that the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) sued the government and a court ordered the release of key Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) opinions and other documents.
|By: Kevin Gosztola Monday March 10, 2014 3:11 pm|
Attorneys from the Electronic Frontier Foundation, which represent twenty-two organizations in a lawsuit against the National Security Agency, have filed a motion to prevent the government from destroying any evidence related to the case. The evidence also apparently relates to other lawsuits against the NSA.
|By: Kevin Gosztola Thursday February 20, 2014 6:40 am|
Unnamed United States government officials have apparently told the Wall Street Journal that the National Security Agency might have to expand its “collection” of Americans’ phone records because people are suing the government to stop what they consider to be intrusive and unconstitutional surveillance.
This idea being floated in a major national newspaper is the first that any lawyer involved in cases against the government have heard this wild argument. Is it some kind of ham-handed attempt to help the NSA retain control of the phone records?
|By: DSWright Tuesday January 21, 2014 9:02 am|
So about that whole not spying on Americans thing, it seems the NSA has been having quite an exchange with domestic law enforcement. According to recently declassified FISA documents the NSA has been tipping off the FBI at least two to three times per day going back at least to 2006.
|By: Kevin Gosztola Friday January 17, 2014 12:15 pm|
The president delivered a speech on changes his administration would support to National Security Agency programs and policies, but what most stood out was not the announced reforms. It was how the speech focused on him and what he had done and how it seemed like he was lecturing Americans who have been outraged by what they have learned about massive government surveillance in the past six months.
|By: Kevin Gosztola Friday December 27, 2013 2:14 pm|
The FBI, Drug Enforcement Agency, and law enforcement, along with the NSA, are collecting information on Americans and then using that information to arrest people. “Parallel construction” is then used to “fabricate evidence” that is substituted with evidence that is subsequently collected legally and through mechanisms that have traditionally been an accepted part of criminal investigations.
In former senior NSA employee and whistleblower William Binney’s view, this is the “real problem.” It is occurring without a warrant and they can bring this information into court. He calls it the “planned program perjury policy right out of the Department of Justice.”
|By: Kevin Gosztola Friday December 27, 2013 12:54 pm|
A federal judge on the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York has ruled in a lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union that the National Security Agency’s bulk data collection of Americans’ phone records is “lawful” and not unconstitutional.
The ruling comes just over a week after another federal judge ruled in a similar lawsuit that the surveillance program violates Americans’ privacy rights and James Madison, one of America’s founding fathers, would be “aghast” if he was alive to see this program.
|By: Kevin Gosztola Tuesday November 19, 2013 11:45 am|
A batch of documents declassified as a result of a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit filed by the Electronic Frontier Foundation have been released. They were posted by the Office of the Director for National Intelligence (ODNI), which disingenuously claimed the release was part of President Barack Obama’s directing the agency to be more transparent.