NSA

NSA Whistleblowers Release Real Surveillance Reform Recommendations: Ask to Meet with President Obama

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NSA spying
EFF

A group of former NSA executives and intelligence agents have released a document detailing how the National Security Agency should be reformed so that the agency no longer violates the constitutional rights of American citizens. The group, which includes former NSA insiders William Binney, Thomas Drake, Kirk Wiebe, and Edward Loomis, has asked to meet with President Barack Obama to brief him on the manifold illegalities and failures of the NSA.

They offer 21 recommendations on how to reform the NSA in ways that protect the rights of American citizens while still enabling the agency to gather intelligence on possible threats to the U.S. Their recommendations go much further toward protecting Americans from unconstitutional surveillance than the 46 proposed by the president's handpicked review board last month.

The group's recommendations chiefly aim to force the NSA to end bulk collection of electronic data on innocent American citizens. The agency would be required to respect the Fourth Amendment rights of Americans to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures and would need a warrant based on probable cause to search data relevant to individual citizens.

Another crucial feature of their recommendations is much increased transparency, including the installation of technology that automatically tracks all accesses to and manipulations of NSA, FBI, and CIA databases. This enables the establishment of audit trails so that an outside oversight body, consisting of members of Congress, tech industry and privacy experts, would be able to trace how agency bureaucrats handle information obtained through surveillance.

In addition, oversight would be enhanced through the creation of a Signals Technical Team (none of whose members can ever have worked for any intelligence agency) that would have unfettered access to all NSA, FBI, and CIA databases to monitor compliance with privacy protections. Whistleblowers would have full confidential access to the STT.

In an attempt to prevent further lying and misdirection by agency officials, the group recommends that when spies testify before Congress about any aspect of inteliigence collection that they use the terminology as defined by the  Department of Defense's Architecture Framework Dictionary.

Some specific recommendations are:

(1) Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC): Reject ability to interpret Constitution, requiring that FISC rely on US District, Appeals and Supreme Court precedents; make all rulings public, with the legitimacy of any security redactions verified independently; revoke 2008 FISA Amendments Act and other restrictions on FISC so that it may again reject applications for warrants on substantive grounds; provide for expert attorneys arguing the case for US residents' privacy and for application of the national security qualification regarding foreign collection.

(4) Immediately outlaw the business records, un-notified searches and general warrants practices under PATRIOT Act, FISA, FISC and any other precedents, requiring individual court warrants based on probable cause to acquire the records of US residents. Mandate that individual companies turning over records to the federal government publish annual statistics on the number and types of records and they notify their affected customers as a norm within [90] days and in exceptional circumstances within [180] days.

(9) Outlaw national security letters and for US citizens require a Federal District Court warrant based on individual probable cause standard.

According to the New York Times, President Obama is currently seeking balance in plan for spy programs. He should meet with them and he would do well to adopt the recommendations made by this group of former NSA officials.

Don't miss Reason's interview with William Binney.

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  1. “A group of former NSA executives and intelligence agents have released a document detailing how the National Security Agency should be reformed so that the agency no longer violates the constitutional rights of American citizens…”

    “”Reformed? REFORMED??? But This is What We Gave Ourselves Permission To Do?? I is CONFUSED! Founders!!!1!””
    / FBI Director

  2. The group’s recommendations chiefly aim to force the NSA to end bulk collection of electronic data on innocent American citizens.

    Strawberry Alice: You just kicked the shit out of an innocent man.
    Little Bill Daggett: Innocent? Innocent of what?

    1. There is no such thing as innocence, just degrees of guilt.

      /Inquisitor

  3. “Thanks for your input, gentlemen. Now fuck off and don’t let the door hit you on your ass on the way out.”

    1. I think he’d just have them arrested and interred at Gitmo.

      1. Bingo. How convenient of them to all get together for a convenient mass arrest and economical flight to Gitmo.

    2. “You’ll never work in this town again.”

  4. ah, so they took Obama at his word when he talked about such a conversation being worth having. Fools.

    1. It was a ploy to find out who they needed to heighten their surveillance of

  5. I’ve been thinking about Obama and his political problems. While he’s just staying the course and trying to pretend they’ll all go away, it’s getting increasingly likely that the GOP will take over both houses of Congress in 2015, possibly (though much less likely) with veto-proof majorities in each house. So he can see a future of investigations and doubtlessly a slew of prosecutions.

    Just thinking this through as an exercise in pure political strategery, I think Obama should do what heretofore as just been an Internet joke. He should nuke the Moon. Without explanation except to say that it was done for national security purposes. That would be such a huge distraction that he might make it to 2017 without major harm done to his administration.

    1. We don’t pay you to think.

      1. Better be nice to me, or I’ll send this plan to the president. It cannot fail. Speculation will abound–aliens? Secret Nazi base? Libertarian homesteaders? What?

        1. This was covered in The Atrocity Archives, ProL.

          1. I doubt Obama has read that much science fiction. Though I did see that he watches Game of Thrones. Wonder if it’s for the porn or for the fantasy?

            1. He really wants to sit on the Iron Throne.

              1. He already has drones to shoot fire on his enemies from the sky, so it can’t be the dragons.

              2. You think we could get him to voluntarily resign if Martin and HBO both made him a major character in the books and series, played, of course, by Obama himself?

                1. Oooooo, will Dinklage slap him – a lot?

                  1. Well, he would if I were in charge, but I don’t really care, so long as he and Biden are actors instead of executives.

                    I forgot to mention Biden, didn’t I? He’ll be Fred Stark, Ned’s retarded, lost brother.

            2. He probably just told his publicist to pick ten hip/popular shows that show he is hip and popular. I bet the only thing he watches on TV is himself.

              1. I can see it now: Obama sitting in a dark room watching old speeches of himself, just like Osama bin-Laden.

              2. Who knows? The guy lies so much that nothing he says can be taken at face value.

    2. Thus rendering its colonization moot and causing Newkular Titties to die of a brain anuerism and broken heart.

      1. I didn’t say nuke the entire surface of the Moon. Just one spot. On the side facing the Earth. Preferably not any historic landing sites, though destroying a foreign lander might be okay for this plan.

        1. This could be the plot for a SPACE:1999 reboot…

          1. It’s funny you say that, because this morning, I had this idle thought about what a new Space: 1999 would look like. It would be less absurd, of course, with a better explanation about why the Moon leaves orbit.

            I figure that’s the big arc–the Moon just takes off and occasionally warps from one place to another. The people in Alpha have no idea what’s going on, but it’s obviously some intelligence is fucking with them for some unknown reason.

  6. This panel and its reform recommendations were going to happen whether or not a high school dropout traitor leaked secrets to terrorists. Because President Obama totally welcomed the debate all along.

    1. This one has a future with us. Unless that was sarcasm, in which case put him in one of the sarcasm camps.

    2. When Obama talked about being transparent, I think what he really meant is that no child should be raised by a cisgender since that will other them.

      1. Obama’s very transparent: a transparently manilupitive, lying sack of shit.

  7. Start working at home with GOOGLE!YAHOO. ABCNEWS AND MORE GLOBAL SITES… It’s by-far the best job I’ve had. Last Wednesday I got a brand new BMW since getting a check for $6474 this – 4 weeks past. I began this 8-months ago and immediately was bringing home at least $77 per hour.for a work detail go to home tab…. I work through this link,

    http://WWW.CASH46.COM

  8. According to the New York Times, President Obama is currently seeking balance in plan for spy programs. He should meet with them and he would do well to adopt the recommendations made by this group of former NSA officials.

    If he does meet with them, it’ll be at a secluded, deserted crossroads in the middle of the Mojave desert. A slight buzzing sound of a Predator drone will then be heard overhead…

    IT’S A TRAP! /Adm. Ackbar

    1. President Obama is currently seeking balance

      Gosh, its not like him to tip his hand like this and let us all know he’s looking for something cosmetic that will make no real difference.

      The pressure must be getting to him.

  9. The IRS would like to have a talk with the following prospective tax scofflaws:

    William Binney
    Thomas Drake
    Edward Loomis
    J. Kirk Wiebe
    Ray McGovern
    Elizabeth Murray
    Coleen Rowley
    Daniel Ellsberg

  10. Roll and roll people lets move it.

    http://www.AnonGlobal.tk

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