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'Now Is the Time': Tech Giants Urge Congress to Pass NSA Reform

Google, Microsoft, Facebook and Apple are among the companies lobbying the U.S. Senate to approve the USA Freedom Act before year's end.
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Google, Apple and other big names in consumer technology are imploring Congress to pass a bill to curb the surveillance powers of the National Security Agency. More than a year after former NSA contractor Edward Snowden leaked classified documents detailing the breadth of NSA spying powers, the U.S. Senate this week is expected to begin weighing the USA Freedom Act. The bill sponsored by Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., would set limits on the bulk collection of Americans’ Internet data. Google, Microsoft, Facebook, Apple, Twitter and other tech giants on Sunday sent an open letter to the Senate imploring it to reform government surveillance techniques. “Since forming the Reform Government Surveillance coalition last year, our companies have continued to invest in strengthening the security of our services and increasing transparency,” the letter said. “Now, the Senate has the opportunity to send a strong message of change to the world and encourage other countries to adopt similar protections.”



— James Eng