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Warrantless E-mail Access for Feds Shelved

By - Source: Senate | B 14 comments

Bill amended to remove privacy concerns for American internet users.

Patrick Leahy's bill that intended to deliver warrantless email access for American internet users to the U.S. government has been shelved.

The Senator said in a press release that his latest amendments to the bill will adhere strictly to protecting privacy as opposed to the exact opposite.

The bill no longer includes mention of allowing more than 22 agencies (including the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Federal Communications Commission) to access Americans' private e-mails, as well as their Google Docs files, Facebook wall posts and Twitter direct messages without a search warrant.

Leahy, who is the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, had responded to the bill amended last week by abandoning his proposal and stressing he remains committed to protecting privacy rights for American citizens.

"I hope that all members of the Committee will join me in supporting the effort in Congress to update this law to protect Americans' privacy," he said.

Privacy groups and industry representatives are now set to vote on the revised proposal, which is due for a committee vote on Thursday. The amended bill "protects the central privacy provision that we put forward," says Christopher Calabrese, legislative counsel for the ACLU.

 

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  • 21 Hide
    candrwhite , November 28, 2012 5:09 PM
    It's funny, I didn't read where he said 'Yes, I tried to screw over the country, the entire internet freaked out, and now... let's just ignore those things and know that I'm all about citizen's privacy'.
  • 15 Hide
    Kami3k , November 28, 2012 5:04 PM
    Pff, just like every career politician he is just protecting his a$$.

    *cough* Term limits *cough*
  • 14 Hide
    j2j663 , November 28, 2012 5:17 PM
    Politicians like this disgust me, oh wait, thats all of them.
Other Comments
  • 15 Hide
    Kami3k , November 28, 2012 5:04 PM
    Pff, just like every career politician he is just protecting his a$$.

    *cough* Term limits *cough*
  • 2 Hide
    edogawa , November 28, 2012 5:06 PM
    Great news. That's just an invasion of privacy.
  • 21 Hide
    candrwhite , November 28, 2012 5:09 PM
    It's funny, I didn't read where he said 'Yes, I tried to screw over the country, the entire internet freaked out, and now... let's just ignore those things and know that I'm all about citizen's privacy'.
  • 9 Hide
    freggo , November 28, 2012 5:16 PM
    Makes you wonder if his family's email addresses, and those of other members of Congress, would be excluded.
  • 14 Hide
    j2j663 , November 28, 2012 5:17 PM
    Politicians like this disgust me, oh wait, thats all of them.
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , November 28, 2012 5:21 PM
    What it makes me wonder, is what else is in the bill? Has anyone read the [assumed] several-hundred pages of legalese?
  • 5 Hide
    jupiter optimus maximus , November 28, 2012 6:32 PM
    Wish that the same could be said of the "Patriot Act" which created a hugely expensive underground secretive government bureaucracy that monitors every activity of every American (data collecting). Yet, it hasn't stopped or spotlighted any terrorist activity since passage back in 2001.
  • -1 Hide
    cirdecus , November 28, 2012 7:00 PM
    Yep, another democrat with a strong arm for government control and regulation
  • 0 Hide
    thecolorblue , November 28, 2012 7:04 PM
    they're already doing it anyway, this was just to cover the govt's ass for what it is ALREADY DOING.

    http://www.democracynow.org/2012/4/23/more_secrets_on_growing_state_surveillance

    Watch that link!!!!!
  • 0 Hide
    cirdecus , November 28, 2012 7:05 PM
    next we'll have government ran DNS servers
  • 0 Hide
    Marcus52 , November 28, 2012 8:09 PM
    A good place for keeping up with issues like this:

    https://www.eff.org/

    There are others, too. (Thanks for the link thecolorblue)
  • 0 Hide
    koga73 , November 28, 2012 8:18 PM
    Do yourself a favor and get your own email server that you control.
    My server is in my house so the only way the feds could read my emails is if they raided my house and took my server... which is also encrypted. I also use my server for DNS and use OpenDNS.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , November 29, 2012 12:30 PM
    Since this is another act of the government intruding on our liberty, it is funny how they don't mention in the article that this is a democrat proposing this. If it would have been a republican, they would have said so and added what state he was from.
  • 0 Hide
    millerm84 , November 29, 2012 1:22 PM
    madethisupSince this is another act of the government intruding on our liberty, it is funny how they don't mention in the article that this is a democrat proposing this. If it would have been a republican, they would have said so and added what state he was from.



    If you checked the previous article you would have noticed that his party affiliation is stated. If you understood how the US government worked you would know that the head of any committee is usually a member of that house's controlling party. So, committee heads in the Senate will be democrats while those in the house will be republicans in the current Congress. If I had to guess it was an oversight on the part of Tom's, but his party affiliation was stated in the original article and if you're, as I have assumed, an American citizen you should be able to determine his party affiliation based on the facts presented in the article. The omission of his state is present in both articles but that fact doesn't carry the same weight as his party affiliation. None the less, this isn't party bias as you imply; it's the author assuming you're following the story.