Big Brother Is Watching You: NSA Surveillance and the Erosion of Civil Liberties

Cato Sponsor e-Briefing
Tuesday, September 10, 2013
12:00 p.m.–1:00 p.m. EDT

Featuring a presentation and live discussion with Jim Harper, Director of Information Policy Studies, Cato Institute and Julian Sanchez, Research Fellow, Cato Institute; moderated by Caleb O. Brown, Director of Multimedia.

If you are experiencing technical difficulties, please contact Jenna Huhn at 202-218-4617.

Download Video of Event
Download Podcast of Event

The revelation of controversial NSA surveillance programs confirmed what many long suspected: the federal government is spying on U.S. citizens. Sales of George Orwell’s 1984 skyrocketed and public opinion polls now show skepticism. In leaking highly classified documents, former NSA contractor Edward Snowden revealed mass surveillance of U.S. citizens’ phone calls and emails, and cooperation from private telecom companies. Yet supporters claim the programs are legal and it has prevented terrorist attacks. But even if this is true, what did this “security” cost? Is acceptance just a result of a slow erosion of our civil liberties? Do these programs violate the Fourth Amendment? Cato scholars Jim Harper and Julian Sanchez will discuss the intersection of privacy and security, outline how the NSA programs work, and take your questions.

This special online-only series is an opportunity to hear from Cato's policy staff. Please note that it is not necessary to download any software to watch the briefing online; no reservation is necessary.

Our thanks for your continued support of the Cato Institute. We hope you'll join in on the discussion.

Send any questions, comments, or other feedback to Harrison Moar at