NSA limits warrantless surveillance of US citizens: Impact on Section 702 renewal?

In a surprise announcement last week, the National Security Agency (NSA) stated that it was ending the much criticized (and previously much defended) practice of collecting digital communications data that merely mentions a foreign surveillance target: “[The] NSA will no longer collect certain internet communications that merely mention a foreign intelligence target. This information is referred to in the Intelligence Community as ‘about’ communications in Section 702 ‘upstream’ internet surveillance. NSA will limit such collection to internet communications that are sent to and from a foreign target.” The normally secretive agency also revealed that it would “delete the vast majority of previously acquired upstream internet communications as soon as practicable.”