Porn News

Bush seeks powers to access ISP data

WASHINGTON – The Bush administration asked a federal appeals court Friday to restore its ability to compel Internet service providers to turn over information about their customers or subscribers as part of its fight against terrorism.

The legal filing with the 2nd Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in New York comes amid a debate in Congress over renewal of the Patriot Act and whether to expand the FBI’s power to seek records without the approval of a judge or grand jury.

U.S. District Judge Victor Marrero of New York last year blocked the government from conducting secret searches of communications records, saying the law that authorized them wrongly barred legal challenges and imposed a gag order on affected businesses.

The ruling came in a lawsuit by the American Civil Liberties Union and an Internet access firm that received a national security letter from the FBI demanding records. The identity of the firm remains secret.

The government was authorized to pursue communications records as part of a 1986 law. Its powers were enhanced by the Patriot Act in 2001.

The administration said the judge’s ruling was off the mark because the company did mount a legal challenge to the demand for records. “Yet in this very case, the recipient of the NSL did precisely what the NSLs supposedly prevent recipients from doing,” the filing said.

The law’s ban on disclosing that such a letter has been received also is appropriate because of legitimate security concerns, the government said.

But ACLU attorney Jameel Jaffer said the law does not contain a provision to challenge the FBI’s demand for documents. The ACLU and the firm filed the lawsuit to challenge the law’s constitutionality on the grounds that it doesn’t contain such a provision, he said.

“Most people who get NSLs don’t know they can bring a challenge in court because the statute doesn’t say they can,” he said. “No one has filed a motion to quash in 20 years.”

The ban on disclosure is so broad that the ACLU initially filed the suit under seal and negotiated for weeks on a version that could be released to the public.

Previously censored material released several months after Marrero’s ruling included innocuous material the government wanted withheld, the ACLU said, including the phrase “national security” and this sentence from a statement by an FBI agent: “I am a Special Agent of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.”

Out-Law.com: The US Justice Department wants to obtain sensitive customer records from ISPs, according to the Associated Press. It is asking a court to overturn a ruling that struck down sweeping investigative powers in the Patriot Act as unconstitutional.

The Patriot Act is properly called the USA Patriot Act, an acronym for Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism. It was passed in the weeks following 9/11 as an anti-terrorism measure.

While the Act has been widely criticised for undermining civil liberties in the US, a lot of attention has focused on its treatment of what are known as “National Security Letters,” or NSLs.

Prior to the Act, the FBI was entitled, without court approval, to issue NSLs that required ISPs and other communication providers to provide sensitive customer records on suspected terrorists and spies. Since the Act came into force, however, the FBI has been able to issue NSLs to obtain information about anyone if the request is, in the FBI’s opinion, “relevant” to a terrorist investigation. Again, court approval is not required.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the New York Civil Liberties Union and an unidentified ISP challenged the law last year. They were forced to file their lawsuit under seal (meaning it must be dealt with confidentially) to avoid penalties for violating gag provisions in the Act.

The lawsuit argued that the provision was worded so broadly that it could effectively be used to obtain the names of customers of web sites such Amazon.com or eBay, or a political organisation’s membership list, or even the names of sources that a journalist has contacted by e-mail.

In September, Judge Victor Marrero of the Southern District of New York struck down the NSL provision on the grounds that it violates free speech rights under the First Amendment as well as the right to be free from unreasonable searches under the Fourth Amendment.

“Democracy abhors undue secrecy,” said the Judge, who also struck down the gag provision of the Act. “Under the mantle of secrecy, the self-preservation that ordinarily impels our government to censorship and secrecy may potentially be turned on ourselves as a weapon of self-destruction.”

The Justice Department has now appealed, arguing, according to the Associated Press, that the fact that the ACLU has been able to challenge the NSL shows that the provision is constitutional.

But, speaking to the Associated Press, ACLU lawyer Jameel Jaffer explained that the Patriot Act does not actually contain provisions allowing challenges to be made to NSLs. That, he says, is why the ACLU filed the lawsuit.

“Most people who get NSLs don’t know they can bring a challenge in court because the statute doesn’t say they can,” he said.

The Justice Department filing comes in the middle of Congressional debates over the proposed reauthorisation and expansion of the Patriot Act.

On Thursday, the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence held a closed-door session to mark up legislation that would re-authorise, and expand, the Patriot Act. The ACLU denounced the secret session, saying that the debate and vote on a public law should be public.

 

220 Views

Related Posts

TransSensual Releases ‘My Best Friend’s TS Sister 2’

Taboo passions return in "My Best Friend’s TS Sister 2," available now exclusively at Mile High Media’s trans erotica site TransSensual.com.

Zariah Aura Headlines ‘My Best Friend’s TS Sister 2’ From TransSensual

MONTREAL — Zariah Aura stars with Haven Rose and Itzel Saenz in "My Best Friend's TS Sistser 2," from Mile High Media studio brand TransSensual. The title also features Cliff Jensen, Joel Someone and Rodrigo Amor. "With a brand-new cast…

Dorcel Releases Liselle Bailey’s ‘Room 212’

European label Dorcel has released "Room 212," the latest story-driven couples feature from acclaimed director Liselle Bailey.

The Continuous Journey of Legal Compliance in Adult

The adult entertainment industry is teeming with opportunity but is also fraught with challenges, from anticipating consumer behavior to keeping up with technological innovation. The most labyrinthine of all challenges, however, is the world of legal compliance. Legal compliance in…

LucidFlix Debuts Siren Obscura Collab ‘Enigma’

Actor/director Seth Gamble has announced the release of "After Hours," the first scene of "Enigma," his inaugural collaboration with Los Angeles-based director, cinematographer and editor Siren Obscura.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.