Cease RISAA, the FISA Mass Surveillance Expansion - 1 Day Left

RISAA - Reforming Intelligence and Securing America Act. FISA - Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. We all have the right to privacy in our communications, which includes placing restrictions on the government’s ability to collect and access them. It is crucial to amend Section 702, the mass surveillance law that circumvents our constitutional rights and allows the government to access our communications through a loophole. Recently, there have been several efforts to renew this authority with different levels of reform and compromise. Nearly half of the U.S. House of Representatives supported a measure that would require the government to seek court approval before accessing Americans’ communications in Section 702 databases. However, a bill was passed at the last minute by proponents of mass surveillance that actually expands these powers instead of reforming them. This is why we urge you to urge the Senate to halt this expansion.

Current Situation: Section 702 of FISA is scheduled to expire on April 19. The House of Representatives recently approved RISAA, a reauthorization bill that significantly expands the range of data the government can gather under Section 702. This bill also permits the government to utilize this unchecked and excessive mass surveillance power to monitor prospective immigrants and asylum seekers. This decision disregards any genuine claim that this surveillance is solely for counterterrorism or intelligence purposes.

The U.S. Senate is expected to push forward with this concerning legislation this week - a bill that Senator Ron Wyden described as “one of the most significant and alarming expansions of government surveillance authority in history.” His assessment is accurate. Tell your Senators to oppose the Reforming Intelligence and Securing America Act.

Section 702 permits the government to conduct surveillance on foreign individuals within the United States. Although Section 702 prohibits the NSA and FBI from deliberately targeting Americans, these agencies frequently obtain communications of innocent Americans “incidentally.” Subsequently, the government can search through the communications of Americans that were “incidentally collected,” all without the need for a warrant based on probable cause.

The government has frequently misused Section 702 by scanning its databases for communications of American citizens. In 2021, the FBI disclosed conducting as many as 3.4 million searches of Section 702 data without warrants, utilizing identifiers of Americans. This loophole, along with other issues, must be addressed before Congress moves forward with renewing Section 702.

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