Obama seeks steps to limit surveillance programs

Reuters News
Posted: Aug 09, 2013 3:01 PM

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Barack Obama will call on Congress to reform provisions in the Patriot Act that govern collection of telephone and other "metadata" to provide greater transparency and oversight of the controversial programs, officials said on Friday.

Obama will also seek to create a position for an adversary to raise civil liberty concerns at the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, the officials said.

Former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden revealed widespread government collection of phone and Internet records earlier this year, sparking debate over how far the government should be allowed to go in monitoring its citizens' communications to protect the country from attack.

The Department of Justice will release the legal rationale for U.S. surveillance programs on Friday, the official said.

Obama was scheduled to unveil the proposals at a news conference on Friday afternoon.

(Reporting by Jeff Mason and Steve Holland; Editing by Eric Walsh)