Federal Privacy and Civil Liberties Board Finally Meets

They took a five-year siesta


This week marks the first time in five years since the last Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board (PCLOB) meeting. The board is an independent body within the President's office that is supposed to ensure privacy and civil liberties in the creation and implementation of US law and policy and executive branch actions against terrorism, but has languished for some time due to Presidential neglect.

On Wednesday, the board solicited public feedback for its agenda after the Senate finally confirmed four nominees in August. We hope the PCLOB embraces its role and becomes a forceful oversight mechanism by focusing on the government's surveillance regime—like the NSA's warrantless wiretapping—and secret legal analyses that undergird much of the government's domestic spying policies.