FISA: 702 Collection

In 2008, Congress passed a set of updates to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), including Section 702 which authorized warrantless surveillance of non-U.S. persons reasonably believed to be outside the country. However, documents leaked by Edward Snowden revealed that 702 was being used far more heavily than many expected, serving as the legal basis for the collection of large quantities of telephone and Internet traffic  passing through the United States (and unlike 215, including content rather than just metadata). Still, as 702 only permits overseas collection, most criticism of the provision has come from abroad. But many domestic privacy advocates also worry that large amounts of American communication are being swept up “incidentally” and then used as well.

Latest in FISA: 702 Collection

FISA: 702 Collection

A Way Forward on Section 702 Queries

The legislative debate over Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act has ended with passage of a six-year reauthorization that omitted many of the provisions privacy advocates had argued were necessary. But the legal and policy debate is likely to continue in the U.S. and in European courts.

We took different positions in the overall debate on Section 702. But we agree that there is an important step the U.S. government can take now to bolster transparency and accountability within the program without unduly burdening legitimate intelligence activities.

FISA: 702 Collection

The Merits of Supporting 702 Reauthorization (Despite Worries About Trump and the Rule of Law)

The Senate voted by a razor-thin margin Tuesday to invoke cloture on the FISA Amendments Reauthorization Act of 2017, which would reauthorize for six years Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. The bill includes some significant changes to 702, though the reforms are substantially more modest than those sought by privacy advocates.

Podcasts

The Lawfare Podcast: What the Heck is Up with 702?

As the year is coming to a close, Congress has now missed the deadline for reauthorizing FISA Section 702. Molly Reynolds, a Brookings fellow in Governance Studies and expert on Congress, joined Benjamin Wittes and Susan Hennessey for a converation on the failure to reauthorize and what happens next. They discussed the politics of Section 702, the influence of this year's overall legislative agenda, and what to expect in 2018 for the crucial intelligence apparatus.

FISA Reform

Senate Intelligence Committee Draft 702 Reauthorization Bill

Below is the newly released draft bill to reauthorize Section 702 of the FISA Amendments Act (FAA) that Sen. Richard Burr, chairman of the Senate intelligence committee, reported. The bill would extend the authorization for eight years. The committee plans to mark up the bill in a closed session on Oct. 24.

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