January 17, 2014 | By Rebecca Jeschke

Obama Takes First Steps Toward Reforming NSA Surveillance, but Leaves Many Issues Unaddressed

President Obama this morning announced a series of reforms his administration will support to rein in surveillance abuses by the National Security Agency.

"The President took several steps toward reforming NSA surveillance, but there's still a long way to go," said EFF Legal Director Cindy Cohn.  "Now it's up to the courts, Congress, and the public to ensure that real reform happens, including stopping all bulk surveillance--not just telephone records collection. Other necessary reforms include requiring prior judicial review of national security letters and ensuring the security and encryption of our digital tools, but the President's speech made no mention of these.  We're hopeful that the big data and privacy review commissioned by John Podesta will address these issues and the further steps outlined in our scorecard. We also look forward to addressing the underlying constitutional problems with the surveillance in our ongoing lawsuits: Jewel v. NSA and First Unitarian Church v. NSA."

"It was encouraging to see the President recognize the privacy rights of people around the world," said International Rights Director Katitza Rodriguez.  "However, the details of Obama's plans to actually protect those privacy rights must conform with international human rights law, specifically that suspicion is necessary to target non-US person for surveillance."

EFF will have additional analysis of the recommendations soon on our Deeplinks blog

Deeplinks Topics

Stay in Touch

NSA Spying

EFF is leading the fight against the NSA's illegal mass surveillance program. Learn more about what the program is, how it works, and what you can do.

Follow EFF

This #CyberMonday, give the cyber gift of cyber membership with the nonprofit dedicated to your cyber rights: https://supporters.eff.org/sh...

Nov 30 @ 5:06pm

Pakistan's new electronic crimes bill has been called the worst cyber-crime law in the world. Here's why: https://www.eff.org/deeplinks...

Nov 30 @ 4:39pm

The USA Freedom Act's changes to NSA surveillance have gone into effect. Here's what that means so far: https://www.eff.org/deeplinks...

Nov 30 @ 3:54pm
JavaScript license information