Menu
FBI expansion of surveillance powers meets obstacle

FBI expansion of surveillance powers meets obstacle

A senator placed a hold on legislation that has provisions to expand the scope of NSLs

A move in the US Senate to provide enhanced surveillance powers to the FBI through the use of National Security Letters met a hurdle Monday after Senator Ron Wyden placed a hold on the 2017 Intelligence Authorization bill over the controversial provisions.

Wyden’s hold is a a measure by which a senator or group of senators can prevent a motion from reaching a vote.

Tech companies and industry and civil rights groups are opposed to what is seen as a wider push by the Senate to increase the scope of the NSLs, which would allow the government to collect Internet records such as browsing history, email metadata, and location information through administrative orders and without court approval.

The 2017 Intelligence Authorization Act includes provisions to expand warrantless government surveillance and takes aim at a valuable independent oversight board, according to Wyden, a Democrat from Oregon, who last month voted against the bill in the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence.

The current version of the intelligence authorization bill contains a provision in section 803 that would authorize individual FBI field offices to demand Americans’ email and Internet records simply by issuing a NSL, without court oversight, Wyden said in a statement while announcing the hold in the Senate.

The FBI is currently allowed to issue NSLs to collect phone records and financial records, without the approval of a judge, and in 2013 the President’s surveillance review group recommended reforming this authority, to require court oversight such requests, Wyden said.

Last week, separate legislation to give the government enhanced powers for NSLs did not pass, though senators have indicated that they would have another shot at it. The amendment was included as part of the Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act.

Wyden said he hoped to be able to work with colleagues to remove the controversial provisions prior to their consideration of the bill by the full Senate. “Until then I will object to the proposal to pass this bill by unanimous consent,” he added.

Follow Us

Join the New Zealand Reseller News newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Featured

Slideshows

Reseller News launches inaugural Hall of Fame lunch

Reseller News launches inaugural Hall of Fame lunch

Reseller News welcomed 2015 and 2016 inductees - Darryl Swann, Dave Rosenberg, Gary Bigwood, Keith Watson, Mike Hill and Scott Green - to the inaugural Reseller News Hall of Fame lunch, held at the French Cafe in Auckland. The inductees discussed how the channel can collectively work together to benefit New Zealand, the Kiwi skills shortage and the future of the industry. Photos by Maria Stefina.

Reseller News launches inaugural Hall of Fame lunch
Educating from the epicentre - Why distributors are the pulse checkers of the channel

Educating from the epicentre - Why distributors are the pulse checkers of the channel

​As the channel changes and industry voices deepen, the need for clarity and insight heightens. Market misconceptions talk of an “under pressure” distribution space, with competitors in that fateful “race for relevance” across New Zealand. Amidst the cliched assumptions however, distribution is once again showing its strength, as a force to be listened to, rather than questioned. Traditionally, the role was born out of a need for vendors and resellers to find one another, acting as a bridge between the testing lab and the marketplace. Yet despite new technologies and business approaches shaking the channel to its very core, distributors remain tied to the epicentre - providing the voice of reason amidst a seismic industry shift. In looking across both sides of the vendor and partner fences, the middle concept of the three-tier chain remains centrally placed to understand the metrics of two differing worlds, as the continual pulse checkers of the local channel. This exclusive Reseller News Roundtable, in association with Dicker Data and rhipe, examined the pivotal role of distribution in understanding the health of the channel, educating from the epicentre as the market transforms at a rapid rate.

Educating from the epicentre - Why distributors are the pulse checkers of the channel
Kiwi channel reunites as After Hours kicks off 2017

Kiwi channel reunites as After Hours kicks off 2017

After Hours made a welcome return to the channel social calendar last night, with a bumper crowd of distributors, vendors and resellers descending on The Jefferson in Auckland to kickstart 2017. Photos by Maria Stefina.

Kiwi channel reunites as After Hours kicks off 2017
Show Comments