The New Guidelines for the NSA

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Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) – Brennan Center for Justice Liberty & National Security Program Co-Director Elizabeth Goitein discusses the 46 recommendations made by the NSA review panel for the NSA’s surveillance methods with Pimm Fox on Bloomberg Television’s “Taking Stock.” (Source: Bloomberg)

Of the liberty and national security program at the brennan center for justice.

We want to thank you for being here.

Did you get a chance to look at the recommendations?

I did.

I have looked at them.

You have experience in the u.s. senate guiding their various senators and advising them on national security issues.

What do you make of the proposals?

Well, they went quite far actually, to changing the way the nsa operates and specifically making changes to some of the programs that have been reported such as the ball collection of american phone records.

It would and the ball collection program.

There is a little asterix there that there is the potential that the records would be shifted, going to a third party which could then hold them for as long as two years, as the recommendation.

A third party not associated with government?

Not associated with the government.

It could be the telephone companies, it could be a third party that collects the data in one database from the telephone companies.

That is a bit of a wrench in the works, the fact that they are contemplating that kind of activity.

Essentially, it ends bulk collection as it is occurring now.

It also extends some new protections to how the government can treat the contents of communications that are acquired for foreign intelligence purposes.

It would put limits on the use of backdoor searches which is this practice of searching through to medications that supposedly targeted foreigners to try to find information about the u.s.. based on your experience, with the revelations, are they revelatory to you?

They were.

I don't know if you can be surprised at having been shocked or shocked about being surprised.

This is the kind of activity that it might be collecting.

Nobody expected the size and scope of the collection activities.

Can you explain the legal term sovereign immunity and what that has to do with the lawsuits related to this information?

They have yet to be sued.

It seems counterintuitive that they would give the consent but they frequently do.

-- they're giving consent to be sued.

There's a real controversy right right now over what mechanisms have been made available to people to challenge the nsa positivity.

The government has taken the position that this is very limited.

As an expert in this area, do you have any insight into why the ruling will go -- into where the ruling will go?

It can be very hard to prevent these issues.

In terms of constitutional challenges, people will find a

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