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IT Has a Vital Role to Play in the Assault on Privacy
The USA PATRIOT (Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism) Act grants even more wrong and intrusive search techniques than those used in the 1950s. As observed by the Electronic Frontier Foundation, this act enables surveillance of the Web surfing of any individual, even one who is not suspected of any crime, merely based on "relevance" to an ongoing criminal investigation. It also expands government powers to compel ISPs to release user activity information with only a subpoena, and allows ISPs to release a lot of information without even this level of due process. In addition, the act broadens the range of other laws by extending the scope of the legal definition of "terrorist" acts. The 342-page law modifies more than 15 other laws, making it impossible to assess its provisions completely without reading the entire affected body of legislation.
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