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Supreme Court Rejects Challenge To Law Allowing Warrantless E-Surveillance

The Court majority ruled that plaintiffs could not challenge a law that authorizes the government to intercept Americans' international electronic communications.

The Supreme Court halted a challenge to a federal law that authorizes the government to intercept international communications involving Americans without a warrant, the New York Times reported.

The 5-4 decision, reached Tuesday, ruled that the challengers—including journalists, lawyers, and human rights advocates—could not question the law's constitutionality. Since the eavesdropping is done in secret, the Court majority argued, the challengers have no evidence their communications are being targeted for tapping.

The act the challengers were bringing into question grants government authorities permission to access American's electronic communication, including phone calls and emails, without a warrant as long as one of the communication participants is outside the United States. The act was first signed into law in July 2008 and again in 2012.

[Image: Flickr user jeffschuler]