President Obama to Announce Changes to NSA Surveillance Program

Posted at 7:49 AM, Jan 17, 2014
and last updated 2014-01-17 07:49:24-05

nsa changes(CNN) — President Barack Obama on Friday will announce the end of the controversial NSA telephone metadata collection program “as it currently exists,” a senior administration official told CNN.

Obama will say that he is ordering a transition of the current intelligence-gathering program to one that addresses concerns of privacy and civil liberties, the official said.

It is part of the changes that Obama is expected to announce to sweeping U.S. surveillance efforts exposed by intelligence leaker Edward Snowden, whose blockbuster disclosures have raised questions about government overreach in fighting terror.

The scope of phone and e-mail snooping by the National Security Agency that came to light last year triggered outrage from civil libertarians and prompted key members of Congress from both parties to weigh changes in national security law.

Obama is expected to act on recommendations from an independent panel that he called for at the height of the fallout from the leaks around the agency’s surveillance activities and a secret court that works with it.

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