US House Votes to Curb N.S.A. Scrutiny of Americans' Communications

Posted in: Surveillance & Privacy at 21/06/2014 20:33

The House of Representatives late on Thursday voted to bar the National Security Agency from looking for Americans' communications without a warrant within a database of emails and phone calls it gathers while targeting foreigners, a technique critics have labeled a "backdoor search loophole."

By a 293-to-123 vote, the House approved the ban as an amendment to the 2015 defense appropriations act. A version of the proposal had been a component in the original version of the USA Freedom Act, legislation the House passed last month that was aimed at curbing N.S.A. spying, but it had been stripped out in negotiations among congressional leaders.

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House of Representatives moves to ban NSA's 'backdoor search' provision
Surveillance reform gained new congressional momentum as the US House of Representatives unexpectedly and overwhelmingly endorsed stripping a major post-9/11 power from the National Security Agency late Thursday night.

By a substantial and bipartisan margin, 293 to 121, representatives moved to ban the NSA from searching warrantlessly through its troves of ostensibly foreign communications content for Americans' data, the so-called "backdoor search" provision revealed in August by the Guardian thanks to leaks from Edward Snowden.

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