The Uniting and Strengthening America by Fulfilling Rights and Ending Eavesdropping, Dragnet-collection and Online Monitoring (USA FREEDOM) Act (that backronym still impresses me) has been signed into laws:
The Senate has approved the USA Freedom Act, which will alter the way U.S. agencies conduct surveillance and gather data. A final vote on the bill came late Tuesday afternoon, after amendments to the bill failed.
Following an expedited enrollment process, President Obama signed the bill into law late Tuesday.
Supposedly the National Security Agency’s (NSA) spying powers expired on Sunday, even though they didn’t, but the USA FREEDOM Act explicitly authorizes the program so we’re right back to where we started (the NSA’s spying programs being legalized redundantly).
Once again, political activism isn’t going to protect you from state surveillance. If you want to defend your privacy you’ll have to take matters into your own hands and learn how to use tools to encrypt and anonymize your communications and data. Because the passage of this bill shows that any political victory is, at best, temporary.