• Fri. Oct 13th, 2023

Controversial Surveillance Law Faces Extension as US Authorities Seek Broader Powers

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ByEsme Greene

Jun 28, 2023
US authorities seek surveillance law extension
Esme Greene
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Senior officials from the Biden administration have disclosed that the US government utilized contentious digital surveillance technology to identify the perpetrator responsible for the significant ransomware attack on Colonial Pipeline in 2021. Additionally, they were able to recover a substantial portion of the funds paid by the company to restore its compromised systems.

Furthermore, it has been revealed that the government employed information obtained through Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act to both identify and mitigate an Iranian ransomware attack on a nonprofit organization’s systems in 2022.

Safeguarding US National Security: Unveiling the Powers of Section 702

Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act is a federal law in the United States that grants intelligence agencies the authority to conduct electronic surveillance on foreign individuals outside the country’s borders without requiring a court order.

Initially enacted in 2008 as an amendment to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978, the legislation was designed to regulate covert surveillance activities conducted for the purpose of gathering foreign intelligence.

The significance of Section 702 lies in its crucial role in safeguarding US national security. By enabling defense, intelligence, and law enforcement agencies to effectively respond to threats posed by adversarial nations, cyberattacks, terrorism, and other potential dangers. In February 2023, the Biden administration expressed its support for the renewal of this law.

In the previous year, it came to light that the FBI had conducted nearly 2 million queries to the Section 702 database regarding cyberattacks targeting critical infrastructure within the United States. However, officials did not clarify whether these queries pertained to the same case or a separate investigation.

Authorities grant certain intelligence agencies the authorization to conduct surveillance on non-US residents located outside the country’s borders. However, during the process of data collection, communications between Americans and individuals classified as “non-Americans” overseas are often identified and retained in a searchable law enforcement database.

These instances of utilizing Section 702 powers have intensified concerns regarding the necessity of FBI analysts obtaining a warrant to access data collected under this provision. A spokesperson for the Biden administration also cautioned that imposing such a requirement would severely undermine US national security and the nation’s ability to safeguard its citizens from threats to national security.

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Esme Greene

Esme brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to our website, specializing in all aspects of DarkWeb security. With a deep understanding of the intricate workings of the DarkWeb and its associated cybersecurity risks, Esme curates insightful and informative content for our readers.