By David Wright, Wired The US government has been collecting data on millions of Americans since its inception.
The information has been kept secret since it was developed as a way to combat the Soviet Union’s atomic bomb development program, and it’s also been used to spy on foreign governments and citizens.
But that secret data is now at risk of being revealed, and in the latest move, Congress is considering legislation that would make it harder for the government to access the data.
The House Intelligence Committee voted on Tuesday to send the bill to President Donald Trump for his consideration, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has said he’s considering the measure.
The bill would make the National Security Agency (NSA) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) the only government entities that could request and use the data, a move that would affect everything from the metadata of phone calls to the email addresses and social media accounts of millions of people.
The bill is being sponsored by Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR), who has said that his legislation would be “the toughest NSA surveillance reform in history.”
Under the bill, the NSA would have to obtain a warrant to use the raw data, and would need a warrant from a judge before they could obtain the information.
In addition, the bill would require the Justice Department to notify the White House of any request that includes a “national security” justification.
This would make clear that a particular warrant could only be granted for “national intelligence information” and that the US would not be able to get a FISA court warrant to obtain the data without a national security exception.
The FBI has also faced a similar dilemma.
The bureau has a Section 215 warrant that can be used to get the data for an “intelligence purpose.”
But the FBI has said the bureau doesn’t need a Section 702 warrant for Section 215, which it uses to target foreign individuals and foreign companies that provide information to the US, but to get other intelligence from companies that supply information to US firms.
The new bill would create a “revised” warrant that would require a “court order” to get Section 702 data, while the FISA court would need an “unspecified” national security purpose.
The revised bill also would require “a specific articulable suspicion” of a crime.
The law would also require the NSA to “conduct a rigorous and timely review” of every application for a Section 705 warrant.
This review would be required to ensure that there’s no “material relationship” between the information sought and a crime, and the “review will be conducted in a manner consistent with the principles of fair and rigorous judicial review.”
The bill has been introduced several times before, and has been defeated before.
It was originally introduced in 2015, and failed in 2016.
However, a House subcommittee last year passed a version of the bill that included some of the changes the intelligence committee wanted.