WASHINGTON (AP) -- Several members of Congress say they want to take a look at potential ways to keep the U.S. safe from terror attacks without sacrificing privacy protections.
The criticism comes after revelations that the intelligence community has been engaging in wide-ranging data-collection on Americans.
Senate Intelligence Committee member Angus King says he's considering how Congress could limit the amount of data spy agencies are allowed to seize from telephone and Internet companies. The Independent from Maine says: "It's a little unsettling to have this massive data in the government's possession.".
Congressman Adam Schiff, a member of the House intelligence committee, says there's good reason that "there's very little trust in the government." The California Democratic adds: "We're our own worst enemy."
But a senior U.S. intelligence official says there are no plans to end the programs.
Asked why the government grabbed the records of just about everyone in America in the search for terrorists, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper tells NBC News, "you have to start some place."
NSA PHONE RECORDS-SNOWDEN
Senate Intelligence Committee chair calls leak `act of treason'
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee is accusing a 29-year-old contractor of committing an "act of treason" by leaking details of government surveillance programs aimed at thwarting terrorists.
Sen. Dianne Feinstein says Edward Snowden should be prosecuted.
Director of National Intelligence James Clapper has decried the revelation of the intelligence-gathering programs as reckless and said it has done "huge, grave damage."
Snowden has fled to Hong Kong in hopes of escaping criminal charges. A reporter for the British newspaper The Guardian says Snowden doesn't think he can get a fair trial in the United States, but is resigned to eventually being caught and tried for the leak.
Snowden checked out of his Hong Kong hotel today. There's no word on where he went.
Hong Kong has an extradition agreement with the United States, but there are some exceptions -- including one for prosecutions that are seen as politically motivated.
NEW: FBI visits NSA leaker's father, stepmother in Pa.
ALLENTOWN, Pa. (AP) -- FBI agents have visited the Pennsylvania home of a man whose son has identified himself as the source of leaks about top-secret U.S. surveillance programs.
Two agents left the home of Lonnie Snowden on Monday afternoon. Snowden's son, Edward, is the focus of an investigation into the leak of classified information about two National Security Agency programs that track phone and Internet messages around the world.
A man who showed FBI identification as he was leaving the home says they spoke to Edward Snowden's family. He referred further comment to the FBI in Philadelphia which declined comment to The Associated Press.
Neighbors on the quiet residential street say Lonnie married Edward's stepmother about six years ago. They never saw Edward at the house.
Neighbor Jonathan Reck says Lonnie Snowden told him Sunday his son was "the whistleblower" and apologized in advance if "the neighborhood starts going crazy" for a media onslaught.