The Modified FISA-702 Reauthorization Bill (HR 6611) Has Passed the House - The Changes Have Expanded Federal Surveillance of Americans

House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI) Chairman Mike Turner is celebrating the passage of HR 6611, the 2023 FISA reauthorization bill.

Chairman Turner would have granted a clean FISA renewal, he’s that kind of Republican; however, several Republicans demanded changes to the FISA-702 authorities that capture the data of American citizens without a warrant.  Thus, the HPSCI modified the authorities within HR 6611, but they made it worse.

(Via CDT) – Tucked away near the end of the bill the House Intelligence Committee reported on December 7 (H.R. 6611, the “HPSCI bill”) is a provision that would dramatically expand surveillance under the controversial Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (“FISA 702”), which sunsets on December 31 unless reauthorized. Section 504 of the bill, innocuously captioned “Definition of Electronic Communications Service Provider,” would expand the types of entities that can be compelled to disclose internet communications whether in storage or in transit.

FISA 702 permits the U.S. government to compel communication service providers to disclose for foreign intelligence purposes the communications of persons reasonably believed to be non-U.S. persons abroad. No warrant is required; a belief that the communications relate to U.S. foreign affairs or national security is sufficient. 

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