ACLU Sues White House Over Phone 'Dragnet'

Group says its constitutional rights have been violated
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 11, 2013 3:22 PM CDT
This photograph shows a copy of the U.S. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court order requiring Verizon to give phone data to the NSA.   (AP Photo)

(Newser) – The ACLU usually sues on behalf of others, but this time it's going to court on behalf of itself. The civil-liberties group has sued the federal government over the "dragnet" it uses to collect information about phone calls, reports Talking Points Memo. Because the ACLU is itself a Verizon customer, the group alleges that its constitutional rights have been violated by the program, "which vacuums up information about every phone call placed within, from, or to the United States."

The lawsuit—read it in full here—not only demands that the surveillance program be stopped but that its records be destroyed, reports the New York Times. The story adds that the ACLU action sets up a potential ruling in the Supreme Court. Among other things, the ACLU argues that the NSA's "personal-data aggregation" violates the Fourth Amendment because it amounts to an unreasonable search and seizure. (Read more ACLU stories.)

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