A Step Backwards

8 09 2010

A message from Anthony Romero, Executive Director,  ACLU:

Dear ACLU Supporter,
Tens of thousands of supporters added their names to the ACLU’s Protect Our Privacy Petition—calling on Congress to update and strengthen the decades-old Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA).

But now, the Obama administration is proposing its own changes to ECPA aimed at weakening—not strengthening—your personal privacy.

ECPA is one of the few laws that can protect our privacy online, but the administration’s proposal would warp this crucial law—expanding the government’s power to collect Americans’ email and internet use records in national security investigations.

That’s a huge step in the wrong direction for personal privacy even as we’re trying hard to advance our privacy protections.

Sign our petition and demand changes that strengthen, rather than weaken, our personal privacy.

The administration’s plan would do exactly the opposite by allowing government officials to obtain more of your personal information using warrantless National Security Letters, without going to court and without any suspicion of wrongdoing. That means more secret requests for your personal information—and more gag orders to stop companies from disclosing what they were forced to turn over.

Congress has already held hearings on updating ECPA, and the issue will soon come up again. We must make sure that any changes to our laws come down on the side of protecting privacy.

Add your name to the petition and tell Congress to strengthen our privacy laws.

We can’t sit back and let our privacy protections be replaced by new privacy invasions. Please raise your voice today.

Thanks for speaking out,

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