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Privacy Oversight Board Gives NSA Surveillance a Pass 170

Posted by Soulskill
from the raise-your-hand-if-you're-surprised dept.
An anonymous reader writes There's an independent agency within the U.S. government called the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board. Their job is to weigh the benefits of government actions — like stopping terrorist threats — against violations of citizens' rights that may result from those actions. As you might expect, the NSA scandal landed squarely in their laps, and they've compiled a report evaluating the surveillance methods. As the cynical among you might also expect, the Oversight Board gave the NSA a pass, saying that while their methods were "close to the line of constitutional reasonableness," they were used for good reason. In the completely non-binding 191-page report (PDF), they said, "With regard to the NSA's acquisition of 'about' communications [metadata], the Board concludes that the practice is largely an inevitable byproduct of the government's efforts to comprehensively acquire communications that are sent to or from its targets. Because of the manner in which the NSA conducts upstream collection, and the limits of its current technology, the NSA cannot completely eliminate 'about' communications from its collection without also eliminating a significant portion of the 'to/from' communications that it seeks."
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Privacy Oversight Board Gives NSA Surveillance a Pass

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  • by NormalVisual (565491) on Wednesday July 02, 2014 @09:12PM (#47373337)
    The excuse Chief Justice Rehnquist gave in his majority opinion was that while being stopped at a checkpoint did count as "seizure" under the Fourth Amendment, it is only a "slight" intrusion which must be weighted against the importance of preventing drunk driving and the effectiveness of the roadblocks and therefore not a true violation of our Constitutional rights.

    "Just the tip, okay baby?" as defined by the Supreme Court.

To be a kind of moral Unix, he touched the hem of Nature's shift. -- Shelley

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