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The top US intelligence official stressed yesterday that a previously undisclosed programme for tapping into internet usage is authorised by Congress, falls under strict supervision of a secret court and cannot intentionally target an American citizen.

The US Government spying project, Prism, is said to have the ability to monitor individuals' activity on the web in unprecedented detail, both inside and outside the US.

President Barack Obama defended the counterterrorism methods and said Americans need to "make some choices" in balancing privacy and security. But the President's response underscores the nerve touched by the disclosures and the sensitivity of the Obama Administration to any suggestion of trampling on civil liberties.

Do you object to US internet monitoring? Vote below and leave a comment. Here is the latest selection of Your Views:

Featured comments

"The real question is the use by the GCSB of this foreign-gathered data to spy on NZers. I simply don't believe John Key's denials. We need a thorough overhaul of our spy laws."

bottom of barrel

"Whether we like it or not, it is the age we live in and electronic surveillance and monitoring is going to happen one way or another. At least we know about the US undertaking this."

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