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What Went Wrong with the FISA Court – Brennan Center Report

In Archive, CIA, FBI, FISA, FISC, NSA, Politics, Surveillance on March 21, 2015 at 2:56 AM


The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance (FISA) Court is no longer serving its constitutional function of providing a check on the executive branch’s ability to obtain Americans’ private communications. Dramatic shifts in technology and law have changed the role of the FISA Court since its creation in 1978 — from reviewing government applications to collect communications in specific cases, to issuing blanket approvals of sweeping data collection programs affecting millions of Americans.

Under today’s foreign intelligence surveillance system, the government’s ability to collect information about ordinary Americans’ lives has increased exponentially while judicial oversight has been reduced to near-nothingness. This report concludes that the role of today’s FISA Court no longer comports with constitutional requirements, including the strictures of Article III and the Fourth Amendment. The report lays out several steps Congress should take to help restore the FISA Court’s legitimacy.


Related Links:

Complete List of Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court Judges Since 1978

The Door to the FISA Court

The Top Secret Rules That Allow NSA to Use US Data Without a Warrant

DNI Releases Original FISA Court Order Authorizing NSA Metadata Surveillance Program

How FISA Court Secretly Reinterpreted Law, Weakening Privacy Restrictions and Expanding Mass Surveillance of Americans

FISA Court Approves NSA Surveillance on 193 Countries, World Bank, IMF, EU, IAEA

US Gov’t Threatened Yahoo with $250k/day Fine for Failure to Participate in NSA PRISM Program / Declassified 2008 FISCR Transcript of Yahoo Oral Argument Re: NSA PRISM Participation

Judges Who OK’d NSA Spying Own Lots of Stock in Telecom Companies / The Judges Approving the NSA’s Surveillance Requests Keep Buying Verizon Stock

  1. […] > What Went Wrong with the FISA Court – Brennan Center Report […]


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