The 4th Amendment to the US Constitution states:
“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”
To add clarity, the so-called Katz Standard definition (Katz v. United States, 1967) specifically included "immaterial intrusion with technology" as a search and assigned Fourth Amendment protection to all areas where a person has a "reasonable expectation of privacy."
To the NSA and FBI: I have a reasonable expectation of privacy from government surveillance when I write non-public emails, make non-public phone calls and conduct my own personal business online. I have not been convicted of a crime nor served a warrant. To my knowledge there is no documentation of probable cause connecting me to any terrorist activity. Hundreds of millions of other people living in the United States can say the same.
Therefore the harvesting and open-ended storage by the US Government of presumed-private data generated from my personal activities is blatantly unconstitutional.
Furthermore, the collection of presumed-private data from Americans and non-Americans without an accompanying investigation is quite simply morally and ethically wrong. It does not come close to honoring the spirit in which the Founding Fathers of the United States wrote and signed the US Constitution.
On Friday June 7th 2013, President Barack Obama, referring to the balance between security and privacy, said "We're going to have to make some choices as a society." Mr. President, the public has not been able to make choices as a society when both these programs and the oversight of these programs are secretive even to the point that many Members of Congress who receive briefings on them know almost nothing about what they are or the breadth of their use. But finally we are now able to make the choice you call for.
As signatories to this petition, we demand the immediate cessation of all Patriot Act Section 215 requests and a halt to the open-ended harvesting, storage, mining and collection of private data falling under Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act until the constitutionality of these and any other related programs is debated openly by the US government and the laws governing them are amended accordingly.
Gavin Landless, CISSP, SSCP, CEH