RealNews

U.S.: 'Privacy-friendly' computer sweeps

A controversial Defense Department program that would comb computer records to identify potential terrorists will have safeguards to ensure that it does not violate individual rights, the Pentagon said Tuesday. Responding to concerns that its Total Information Awareness program would allow unfettered surveillance, the Pentagon said in a report to Congress that the program would have built-in mechanisms to ensure that it did not intrude on Americans’ privacy. The Pentagon also renamed the program Terrorist Information Awareness. Launched after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, TIA would search a wide array of travel records, credit card transactions, and other public and private data sources in an effort to prevent terrorist activity. The program has drawn criticism from civil liberties groups and some members of Congress who say it could open the way for the military to conduct unrestricted electronic surveillance of Americans. Several activists said the report did not ease their concerns. Full Story

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