The National Security Agency has recommended the White House abandon a controversial program that collects and analyzes data on millions of Americans’ domestic calls and texts, The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday.The recommendation against renewing the program represents a dramatic reversal from the longstanding position of the agency, which had argued that the program was vital to identifying and disrupting terrorist activities. The program, which was put in place after the 2001 terrorist attacks, has legal and logistical burdens that outweigh its value to national security, sources told the Journal.The reported recommendation comes a little more than a month after a national security advisor revealed that the NSA hasn’t used the system in months. Luke Murray, an advisor for Republican House minority leader Kevin McCarty of California, also said at the time the White House might not seek to renew its legal authority to operate the program.The NSA had been collecting large amounts of metadata, the digital information that accompanies electronic communications, under a controversial national security policy put in place by the Patriot Act in 2001. That information included what phone numbers were on the call, when the call was placed and how long it lasted, which was then saved in a database.The already heated debate over the Patriot Act programs intensified in 2013 when former NSA contractor Edward Snowden leaked documents detailing the ways in which the secretive US government agency was collecting data. A new system put in place by Congress in 2015 required federal agencies to seek a court order on a case-by-case basis to obtain call data from telephone companies.The USA Freedom Act of 2015, legislation designed to curtail the federal government’s sweeping surveillance of millions of Americans’ phone records, is set to expire at the end of year, if the Trump administration doesn’t ask Congress to renew its authority to continue the program.The NSA and White House didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment. 6 Now playing: Watch this: 4:25 NSA Security Tech Industry Share your voice Comments Yes, Facebook is still tracking you (The 3:59, Ep. 541) Tags
Want to keep up to date with the latest traffic and travel news?Each day Stoke-on-Trent Live journalists bring you the latest news on the roads and railways across Stoke-on-Trent, North Staffordshire, South Cheshire and further afield to help keep you on the move. For the very latest updates on roads including the M6, A500, A50 and more, visit our dedicated traffic and travel news channel here. We also run a live news feed each weekday, which you can access on our website’s homepage from 7am to 9pm from Monday to Friday. And for more as-we-get-it updates on the roads across the region and beyond, join The Sentinel’s traffic and travel Facebook group here. The 44-year-old, of Leek New Road, said: “To be truthful it will be nice to have a bit of peace and quiet instead of ambulances and everything coming up and down. “As long as we still have access to get in and out of the drive, it will be quite nice to have a quiet road. There’s a grid that has sunken in the road and when lorries come past it can be noisy driving over it. So I’m quite glad that it’s happening, it will be a peaceful week and the pot holes will be fixed.” The road closure is set to be in place for up to nine days, but Stoke-on-Trent City Council hopes the work will be finished sooner. Councillor Daniel Jellyman, cabinet member for regeneration, infrastructure and heritage, said: “This is a key route in and out of the city which is used by thousands of motorists each day, and the work is another example of how we are improving roads in the city. “We’re carrying out the work overnight to minimise disruption for motorists, and the road closures and diversions will be clearly signed. The road closure is unavoidable due to the fact there will be workers and machinery on the road, and we have to ensure their safety and that of the public.” Read MoreTop stories on StokeonTrentLive Punter found hiding in bushes Leek New Road in Cobridge “There is quite a lot of potholes that need doing, but so much traffic comes along this road. I think it’s the big lorries that come along that cause the most damage. “I can see the closure causing some chaos because it’s tail to tail along here normally so when it’s closed there will be problems but it’s something that’s got to be done really.” But Claire Edwards says she will look forward to the peace and quiet. Read MorePolice make two arrests as ‘injured’ driver and passenger flee A53 crash scene Dad slams ‘disgusting’ hospital window Leek New Road in Cobridge “The resurfacing is needed because the roads are not maintained at all. With it being such a busy road it gets a lot of heavy trucks and it just gets worse. “I’ve lived here for 12 years and this road has always been bad for pot holes. The road closures are a necessary evil, but if they did a good job of filling the pot holes in in the first place it wouldn’t need resurfacing. “They just stick tarmac on the pot holes and it just breaks away again.” Read MoreM6 closed due to ‘police incident’ Tom Harding, age 31, of Leek New Road, said: “It’s going to be annoying, my mrs will probably have to drive a different way. “It is needed though and it should have been done a long time ago. It will be a nuisance but it’s a necessary one. The roads have been bad since we moved here 18 months ago. “I’m glad something is finally being done, but we won’t know how much of a nuisance it’s going to be until it happens.” And Susan Gwynne, aged 67, said: “We don’t drive so it won’t be as much of an inconvenience to us but it will be to others. Traffic will be at a stand still. Police search for missing woman Get the biggest Daily stories by emailSubscribeSee our privacy noticeThank you for subscribingSee our privacy noticeCould not subscribe, try again laterInvalid EmailMotorists are being warned of disruption as a busy road is to close for up to nine days for resurfacing. The works will take place on Leek New Road, in Cobridge, overnight from Monday June 10 with diversions in place from 7pm to 6am. A section of road between Sandbach Road and Stanway Avenue will be resurfaced, with local traffic being diverted along Sandbach Road, Sneyd Hill and Hanley Road. Lorries will be diverted through Baddeley Green Lane, Leek Road, Greasley Road, Werrington Road, Bucknall New Road, Potteries Way and Waterloo Road. Residents have welcomed the resurfacing work but say it will inevitably cause traffic chaos. Read More’My three-year-old’s been left in tears…’ – Hundreds of families ‘gutted’ after mindless yobs force circus out of North Staffordshire town Glenn Denson, aged 35, of Leek New Road, said: “I work in an off-licence on Leek New Road and it will affect the business because we’re open until 8.30pm. People usually avoid these areas when they see road closures, so it might deter customers. “It will also impact on residents as well because it is a busy road. However, there’s bits of the road that are falling away and it’s an ongoing issue on Leek New Road. Driver named following fatal collision Follow StokeonTrentLive Download our app – You can download our free app for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or get the Android version from Google Play. Follow StokeonTrentLive on Facebook – Like our Facebook page to get the latest news in your feed and join in the lively discussions in the comments. Click here to give it a like! 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