Obama or Congress: Who’s Responsible to Change NSA?

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Jan. 17 (Bloomberg) -- Rainey Reitman, activism director at The Electronic Frontier Foundation, discusses expectations for changes to the NSA’s spying program on Bloomberg Television’s “Market Makers.”

Speaking in the next hour, what would you like to hear?

My expectations are pretty low from what we are going to get from obama today.

I think he is likely to pass the buck to recommend that congress take action to rein in the nsa spying rather than doing something meaningful himself.

The first thing people are looking for from him is a clear statement that he is going to stop bulk surveillance of people who are not suspected of crimes.

They will not be collecting metadata of phone calls and records around the world.

Tech companies are concerned about the nsa efforts to undermine internet security.

It will make it weaker for all technology.

It would be wonderful if he said something on that as well.

You mentioned the president will be putting this over to congress.

Isn't this the type of thing that should have congressional oversight?

Part of the criticism is that things of this nature, too much of the authority is in the executive branch.

This is going to be one of those issues that is going to have by ends from both congress and the executive ranch if we wanted to move quickly.

Obama is unlikely to do anything.

We are going to be reliant on congress to rein in nsa surveillance issues.

Ultimately, the president has the ability to a number of thinks or executive orders.

I do not think he has the motivation to do it.

If this surveillance program is not curtailed, what are the long-term applications?

The long-term effects are going to be hitting the tech industry.

Big companies like google and facebook have been concerned about this.

They met with the president to explain their concerns.

Analysts say that the cloud industry could suffer billions of dollars of loss.

Companies like cisco are saying they are already suffering losses of substantial amounts in their emerging markets.

There is a serious economic consequence in addition to an enormous civil liberties question for people all over the world who want to use technology and have privacy.

Taking a step back, why does it matter who holds the data?

If the government needs it, they can always get a hold of it later on.

I think the important thing is that we are not sweeping up data on people all over the world who are not suspected of a crime.

At the end of the day, the phone metadata has not proven to be effective.

In seven years of the program, they have not pointed to a terrorist attack that has been stopped.

They have not been able to prove that the information they are getting is useful for them.

Why are they getting all of this information on everyone when it is on millions of people and they have no indication it is effective against terrorism?

The solution is not to mandate the telecom companies to collect information and hang onto it.

This has economic consequences and rhymes the issues -- privacy issues.

They should stop collecting information that they do not need on people who are not suspected of anything.

Are we having this discussion if it were not for ever snowed in?

That is a great question.

We have been trying to raise this question for years.

We have been an active litigation over nsa surveillance system thousand six.

Edward snowden change the game.

We realize how much information the nsa has on everybody.

But we get so upset about government collecting data but not internet companies like google?

The government has the ability to investigate people and charged him with crimes and do things.

They are bigger and have more funding than any company.

If you're upset with a cut -- company, you could switch to a different company.

There are privacy concerns with other companies like google and facebook collecting more information than they should.

There are a few checks and balances there.

She is the activism director

This text has been automatically generated. It may not be 100% accurate.

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