Update: The NSA has removed two fact sheets related to the PRISM program after receiving the complaint from senators Udall and Wyden, reports Politico. The fact sheets were intended to clarify and correct misinformation about the surveillance program.
National Security Agency Director General Keith Alexander responded to the complaint, conceding that the document could have been clearer, but did not admit that it was inaccurate.
After reviewing your letter, I agree that the fact sheet that the National Security Agency posted on its website on 18 June 2013 could have more precisely described the requirements for collection under Section 702 of the FISA Amendments Act.
View the full letter here.
The original story follows below.
Two U.S. senators have written to the director of the National Security Agency demanding corrections of “inaccurate” information pertaining to limitations of surveillance programs that was recently publicly published in a fact sheet.
Senators Ron Wyden (Democrat, Oregon) and Mark Udall (Democrat, Colorado) are both members of the senate intelligence committee. The two senators wrote to NSA director General Keith Alexander to express concerns about the fact sheet published by the NSA which they say falsely portrays the restrictions that are in place for the PRISM surveillance program, reports The Guardian.
In a letter to Alexander, Wyden and Udall wrote “We were disappointed to see that this fact sheet contains an inaccurate statement about how the section 702 authority has been interpreted by the US government.”
Unfortunately for the public, the senators say that they are unable to disclose which statements are inaccurate, as this would reveal classified information.
Tom Caiazza, a spokesman for Wyden, said that at this time they are only able to say that the fact sheet released by the NSA portrays protections for Americans’ privacy that are stronger than in reality.
Wyden and Udall are pushing for legislation that would disclose more information about government surveillance and how collected data is interpreted, and add restrictions to surveillance on Americans' phone records. Both senators have for years warned about broad government surveillance that overreaches the letter of the law.
"We believe the US government should have broad authorities to investigate terrorism and espionage, and that it is possible to aggressively pursue terrorists without compromising the constitutional rights of ordinary Americans," Wyden and Udall wrote to Alexander.
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