Supreme Court Declines to Stop Verizon Metadata Handover to NSA
On Monday, the Supreme Court of the United States declined to hear a writ of mandamus petition brought by the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) challenging the legitimacy of Verizon’s wholesale handover of metadata to the NSA. The court gave no explanation.
The denial was part of a long list of other cases that the Supreme Court also declined to hear.
EPIC, a technology and civil liberties-minded group in Washington, DC, filed the plea directly to the Supreme Court, bypassing any lower court—an unusual tactic. The group argued that no other court had the jurisdiction to overturn an order issued by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC).
As we reported earlier, the petition argued that “[i]t is simply not possible that every phone record in the possession of a telecommunications firm could be relevant to an authorized investigation. The telephone surveillance order exceeds the scope of FISC’s jurisdiction under the FISA law.”