The National Security Agency obtained a court order to collect the call records of millions of Verizon customers, according to a secret document obtained by the Guardian.
The sweeping order, issued by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, requires Verizon to give the NSA metadata on all calls within the U.S. and between the U.S. and foreign countries on an “ongoing, daily basis” for three months.
The data includes the phone numbers of both parties involved in the calls, the International Mobile Subscriber Identity (IMSI) number for mobile callers, calling card numbers used in the call, and the time and duration of the calls. It does not include the name or address of the subscriber or other account information, nor does it allow the content of calls to be recorded and collected. It may, however, include the location of the calls through cell site data.
The classified order was issued to the FBI by the secretive court on April 25 and allows the government to collect data until July 19 and hand it over to the NSA. The order came with a gag requirement that prevents Verizon from disclosing its existence. It covers only Verizon, and it’s not clear if other phone companies received similar orders.The document reveals for the first time that the NSA is continuing to do massive datamining on millions of U.S. citizens under the Obama administration — a practice that spawned extensive criticism after it was first exposed in 2006 as part of a secret Bush Administration program that began in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
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While this datamining was started during the Bush administration under the Patriot act, the Obama administration has taken this and other practices to new and alarming heights. This adds to mounting evidence that our federal government has become too big and is exercising power, that under the Constitution, it does not legally possess. But we are a complacent nation and matters will only get worse until, or if, we wake up. We the people must stand up and demand an end to tyrannical practices like these. We need to be more assertive, more involved, and LOUDER . . . Because *they* really need to hear us now!