According to the recent amendment proposed, FBI can view the browser history only with an issued warrant has failed in the US Senate by one vote.
House of Representatives have been persuaded by privacy advocates to pass a law where FBI needs to have a warrant to view your search history.
Congress has been approached by a group of technology to protect the browser history, which as per the current scenario can be obtained without a search warrant by the FBI unless there is a law to prevent it.
The amendment of the USA Freedom Re authorization Act was rejected by the US Senate on May 13th that required Government to get the warrant before searching through Americans’ browsing histories. A Democrat named Sen Ron Wyden from Oregon along with a Republican named Sen Steve Daines from Montana had proposed the Bipartisan amendment which failed by one vote.
Companies like Mozilla, Reddit, Twitter and Patreon along with other organizations which include Reform Government Surveillance, Engine and i2Coaliation have signed a letter on Friday insisting the House Leaders to include the Wyden and Daines amendment.
“Our users demand that we serve as responsible stewards of their private information, and our industry is predicated on that trust,” the letter says. “Americans deserve to have their online searches and browsing kept private, and only available to the government pursuant to a warrant.”
Congress is trying to restore the Government Surveillance Powers under the USA Freedom Re authorization Act that expired in March with the Patriot Act. Provisions are added onto the legislation by the Legislators, like an amendment that would require outside legal experts to penetrate more on privacy and civil liberties issues to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.
On May 14th, House of Representatives received the bill without Wyden- Daines amendment. The FBI will get to view American’s web browser history without a warrant, if the bill is passed and becomes a law.
A letter has been signed on 18th May by the group of tech companies along with more than 50 civil liberties groups including the American Civil Liberties Union, Fight for the Future and Human Rights Watch, as well as privacy advocates like DuckDuckGo and the Center for Democracy & Technology to the House’s leaders for adopting this protection.