Global Politics

National Security Agency Collecting Phone Records of Millions of Americans

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An undated aerial handout photo shows the National Security Agency (NSA) headquarters building in Fort Meade, Maryland. REUTERS/NSA/Handout via Reuters (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS) THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. IT IS DISTRIBUTED, EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - RTX10DXS

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Reuters

You've probably used the phone today. Are you worried yet?

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This story is based on a radio interview. Listen to the full interview.

The National Security Agency's secret collection of phone records from Verizon was on most Americans' minds Thursday.

The Obama Administration is defending the practice as a necessary tool to keep the nation safe from terrorist attacks.

Britain's Guardian newspaper broke the story about the secret court order authorizing the seizure of Verizon records.

And the disclosure has opened up a whole bag of questions about how far the government is reaching into our privacy in the name of security.

James Bamford has written extensively about this.

His latest book is "The Shadow Factory: The Ultra-Secret NSA from 9/11 to the Eavesdropping on America."