The now infamous former NSA contractor, Edward Snowden, has spoken out recently regarding President Obama's planned NSA reform proposals. Snowden released a statement via the American Civil Liberties Union, the group currently handling his legal representation, saying that Obama's planned reform is a "turning point" in the debate on mass NSA phone data collection.
Snowden said this "marks the beginning of a new effort to reclaim our rights from the NSA and restore the public's seat at the table of government." The Obama administration announced late Monday that it would release its NSA reform proposal this week calling for the end of routine NSA phone data collection of American citizens. This is something Snowden said is part of the government admitting the NSA tactics in question "are in fact unnecessary and should be ended."
Under Obama's proposal, data collection would be left to the phone companies as opposed to the NSA. The agency would then have to request specific data through the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court before obtaining it. Under Obama's plan, records would be stored and tracked for 18 months, drastically reduced from the current 5 year plan the NSA is running.
"I’m confident that it allows us to do what is necessary in order to deal with the dangers of a terrorist attack, but does so in a way that addresses some of the concerns that people have raised," Obama said. The President went on to say that he is looking forward to working with Congress in order to pass the legislation quickly.
As the American Civil Liberties Union prepares Snowden's legal representation, he appeared at TED using a telepresence robot recently from Russia where is currently being granted asylum. Recent discoveries from the large cache of secret NSA documents Snowden leaked have pointed at Huawei being a major target for NSA spying.