Government Surveillance

Our surveillance laws provide intelligence and law enforcement agencies with vast powers, but overbroad government surveillance is harmful to both civil liberties and business interests alike. Online services are premised on user trust, and that trust is undermined by loose rules for government access to user data.

Americans consistently cite government tracking as a top concern, and service providers have repeatedly noted that some prospective clients are reluctant to store their data in the U.S. due to the perception of weak rules for government access. We must establish clear rules for government collection of data that protect individual privacy and avoid burdening businesses in a way without harming legitimate law enforcement and national security priorities.

Please click on the following links to learn more about legislation Zoe has authored:

·        Online Communications and Geolocation Protection Act – H.R.983:  This bipartisan bill updates the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) to give Internet users greater privacy from law enforcement data requests. It requires the government to get a warrant to obtain users’ online communications content (such as email messages) and geolocation information (such as cell phone tracking).

·        Surveillance Order Reporting Act – H.R.3035:This bipartisan bill helps gives Americans a better idea of the scale of government surveillance.  It authorizes Internet and telecommunications companies to publicly report an estimate of the number of government surveillance orders they receive and the number of user accounts affected by those orders.


Zoe originally cosponsored the USA FREEDOM Act when it was introduced last year because it was a small step toward reform and transparency. She voted against it in the U.S. House of Representatives because unfortunately the bill was changed in key ways after committee action and will no longer provide the protections she sought.   

“I voted against it...because it falls short of the Fourth Amendment protections Americans deserve." - Zoe Lofgren

Click here to read the New York Time's Editorial 'A Surveillance Bill That Falls Short'

Click here to read Zoe's remarks to her colleagues on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives on the flaws in the USA FREEDOM Act 

Click here 
for a summary of why last minute changes to the USA FREEDOM Act are Cause for Concern

Click here 
for what is being said critically of the USA FREEDOM Act in the Press

Click here for a letter from NSA Whistle-blowers on why the USA FREEDOM Act will not stop mass surveillance of Americans

Click here for Zoe's floor statement on concerns with the USA FREEDOM Act