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updated: 6/7/2013 12:34 PM

Obama defends government surveillance programs

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  • Video: Obama defends surveillance

  • President Barack Obama gestures Friday during a statement in San Jose, Calif. Speaking about the NSA collecting of phone records, the president said 'Nobody is listening to your telephone calls,' just numbers and duration.

      President Barack Obama gestures Friday during a statement in San Jose, Calif. Speaking about the NSA collecting of phone records, the president said 'Nobody is listening to your telephone calls,' just numbers and duration.
    Associated Press

 
Associated Press

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- President Barack Obama is defending his government's secret surveillance, saying Congress has repeatedly authorized the collection of America's phone records and U.S. Internet use.

In his first comments since the programs were publicly revealed this week, Obama says safeguards are in place. He says nobody is listening to the content of phone calls. And he says the Internet targeting is aimed at foreign nationals, not American citizens.

Obama says he increased some of the "safeguards" on the programs after taking office. And he believes they help his administration stop terrorist attacks.

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