Oversight board supports NSA internet spying

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The Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board (PCLOB), which has criticized NSA's collection of call records in its surveillance program, has said that spying on email, Skype and other communications is fine, a discrepancy that has stunned critics.

In a 191-page report, the independent oversight group essentially said that internet-based communications, though they contain more information, need less protection than phone calls.

The board said the FISA 702 program could “strike a better balance between privacy, civil rights and national security,” but it hadn't seen evidence of “illegitimate activity…or any attempt to intentionally circumvent its legal limits.”

The House approved a bill that blocks funding for NSA's warrantless spying and the Email Privacy Act, which would compel government agencies and law enforcement to obtain warrants for accessing email communications gained enough support in the House to pass a vote.

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