Tech industry titans are scheduled to meet with President Barack Obama on Tuesday, and the National Security Agency’s surveillance programs will be part of the discussion. Speaking on the condition of anonymity, an administration source told Bloomberg the executives were first invited to the White House for a meeting about HealthCare.gov and information technology in government.
The executives only consented after NSA programs were added to the agenda. Fifteen executives are expected to attend, according to Time. Of of the fifteen, seven partook in writing a letter to the president and members of Congress on December 9 about why government surveillance needs to be reformed. The governmental practices under scrutiny by the companies first came to light from information leaked by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.
“We understand that governments have a duty to protect their citizens. But this summer’s revelations highlighted the urgent need to reform government surveillance practices worldwide,” the companies’ leaders wrote, later saying they “urge the US to take the lead and make reforms that ensure that government surveillance efforts are clearly restricted by law, proportionate to the risks, transparent and subject to independent oversight.”