Snowden takes victory lap after NSA reform
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Edward Snowden has taken a victory lap this week after the United States enacted legislation to end the National Security Agency's bulk collection of data two years after he revealed the program.

In a New York Times op-ed published Friday, the former NSA contractor praised the legislation signed by President Obama.

"Ending the mass surveillance of private phone calls under the Patriot Act is a historic victory for the rights of every citizen," Snowden wrote, "the latest product of a change in global awareness."


Snowden pointed out in his op-ed that the NSA program had suffered major blows in Washington, adding to the debate over the legislation.

"In a single month, the N.S.A.’s invasive call-tracking program was declared unlawful by the courts and disowned by Congress. After a White House-appointed oversight board investigation found that this program had not stopped a single terrorist attack, even the president who once defended its propriety and criticized its disclosure has now ordered it terminated," wrote Snowden.

"This is the power of an informed public," he said.

Obama on Tuesday signed the USA Freedom Act, which enacted sweeping surveillance reforms and ended the NSA's bulk collection of American's phone data along with other new U.S. limits.

He signed the legislation hours after it passed the Senate by a vote of 67-32. It was held up in the upper chamber by weeks of debate leading to some provisions expiring for nearly two days.

The legislation renewed three parts of the Patriot Act, including the controversial Section 215 previously cited by the NSA in an effort to justify its warrantless collection of Americans' data.

Lawmakers, critics and defenders alike, have continued to discuss Snowden two years after he exposed the program to reporters.