RealTime IT News

Judge Nixes AT&T, Feds on Secrecy Request

A federal judge in San Francisco denied a motion by AT&T and the U.S. government to keep details of a domestic spy program secret.

In his 72-page ruling, Judge Vaughn Walker wrote "the very subject matter of this action is hardly secret."

The ruling is the result of EFF's class-action lawsuit it filed in February against AT&T. The suit accuses the company of supplying telephone and Internet records to the NSA as part of the government's domestic spying program that seeks to weed out terrorist activity.

Both the AT&T and the U.S. government requested the case be dismissed on national security grounds.

"The Court's ruling vindicates the privacy and security rights of every citizen in the United States, according to a statement from Robert D. Fram, an attorney representing the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

"The case can now go forward, as it should, ensuring judicial supervision of the surveillance program while protecting the basic rights of all Americans," according to the statement.

Walker set July 31 as the date when the parties will submit nominees for an expert the court will appoint to review the classified evidence.