Robyn Greenewas quoted in US News & World Report on a Senate vote that failed to expand the FBI's power to take internet records:
The amendment would allow the FBI to use NSLs to force companies to turn over “electronic communications transactional records," sometimes referred to as an ECTR, when it claims they are relevant to an investigation into terrorism or espionage. NSLs are administrative subpoenas that don’t require court approval and often come with a gag order.
Critics say the FBI already can get ECTR records if it convinces a judge there's good cause or if there's an emergency and it seeks retroactive court review.
“When most people hear ECTR, they go, ‘What’s an ECTR?’ And of course they do," says Robyn Greene, policy counsel at the Open Technology Institute. "ECTRs are not records that people are familiar with. When you send an email or go to a website, you think about the content you are sending or receiving, not that there's a trail you are leaving that if the government accessed would reveal your entire digital fingerprint."