House Intelligence panel to weigh changes to FISA

Posted by Ali Watkins on October 28, 2013 

The House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence will hold a rare open hearing Tuesday to examine proposed changes to the laws that govern the National Security Agency’s controversial metadata collection programs. It will be the House panel’s second open hearing since former NSA contractor Edward Snowden revealed detailed information about the programs in June.

Tuesday’s meeting marks the third hearing addressing changes to the NSA’s programs in less than a month, signaling a consensus from legislators that some kind of change to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act is needed to curb growing international concern. Over 20 pieces of legislation addressing mass surveillance are currently floating in various stages on the Hill.

"As Chairman Rogers first promised in July on the House floor, the House Intelligence Committee continues to assess a number of proposals to improve transparency and strengthen privacy protections to further build the confidence of the American public in our nation’s FISA programs,” said Susan Phalen, a spokesperson for the House panel.

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper will join NSA chief Keith Alexander as witnesses Tuesday, along with Assistant Attorney General James Cole and Deputy NSA director Chris Inglis.

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