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Legal Commentary: TalkLeft
EFF Files New Lawsuit Over Illegal Electronic Surveillance
The Electronic Frontier Foundation, which had sued AT&T over its participation in the National Security Agency's warrantless electronic surveillance program, only to have Congress throw a wrench in it by passing a law giving the telecoms retroactive immunity, has filed a new lawsuit against President Bush, Dick Cheney and the Government, taking a different approach.
. "For years, the NSA has been engaged in a massive and massively illegal fishing expedition through AT&T's domestic networks and databases of customer records. Our goal in this new case against the government, as in our case against AT&T, is to dismantle this dragnet surveillance program as soon as possible."
In addition to suing the government agencies involved in the domestic dragnet, the lawsuit also targets the individuals responsible for creating, authorizing, and implementing the illegal program, including President Bush and Vice President Cheney.
The complaint is here (pdf). I encourage everyone to read at least the prelimary statement that outlines the scope of the old TSP (Terrorist Surveillance Program) and how it continues to be used today. Your e-mails, phone records and more are subject to being swept up in this dragnet surveillance program.[More...]
Using this shadow network of surveillance devices, Defendants have acquired and continue to acquire the content of a significant portion of the phone calls, emails, instant messages, text messages, web communications and other communications, both international and domestic, of practically every American who uses the phone system or the Internet, including Plaintiffs and class members, in an unprecedented suspicionless general search through the nations communications networks
In addition to using surveillance devices to acquire the domestic and international communications content of millions of ordinary Americans, Defendants have unlawfully solicited and obtained from telecommunications companies such as AT&T the complete and ongoing disclosure of the private telephone and Internet transactional records of those companies millions of customers (including communications records pertaining to Plaintiffs and class members), communications records indicating who the customers communicated with, when and for how long, among other sensitive information.
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