A report that NSA’s collection of bulk phone records did not lead to any “known terrorist plot or the disruption of a terrorist attack” and since it is illegal, the NSA program should be shut down. The New York Times reported that the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board (which Congress made an independent agency in 2007) issued its 238 page report that the concluded that the NSA program that collected bulk phone records:
- lacks a viable legal foundation
- implicates constitutional concerns under the First and Fourth Amendments,
- raises serious threats to privacy and civil liberties as a policy matter, and
- has shown only limited value,
As a result, the board recommends that the government end the program.
Nonetheless the “…Obama administration has portrayed the bulk collection program as useful and lawful while at the same time acknowledging concerns about privacy and potential abuse.”
The Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board Report should have an influence on the next step in this complex story about national security.