Dear Speaker Boehner and Democratic Leader Pelosi:
We, the undersigned technology associations and groups, write to express our strong support for H.R 2048, the USA Freedom Act, as reported by the House Judiciary Committee on April 30th by a vote of 25 to two.
Public trust in the technology sector is critical, and that trust has declined measurably among both U.S. citizens and citizens of our foreign allies since the revelations regarding the U.S. surveillance programs began 2 years ago. As a result of increasing concern about the level of access the U.S. government has to user-generated data held by technology companies, many domestic and foreign users have turned to foreign technology providers while, simultaneously, foreign jurisdictions have implemented reactionary policies that threaten the fabric of the borderless internet.
The USA Freedom Act as introduced in the House and Senate on April 28th offers an effective balance that both protects privacy and provides the necessary tools for national security, and we congratulate those who participated in the bipartisan, bicameral effort that produced the legislative text. Critically, the bill ends the indiscriminate collection of bulk data, avoids data retention mandates, and creates a strong transparency framework for both government and private companies to report national security requests.
Meaningful surveillance reform is vital to rebuilding the essential element of trust not only in the technology sector but also in the U.S. government. With 21 days remaining until the sunset of certain national security authorities, we urge you to swiftly move to consider and pass the USA Freedom Act without harmful amendments.
BSA | The Software Alliance
Computer & Communications Industry Association
Information Technology Industry Council
Reform Government Surveillance
Software & Information Industry Association