Several judges from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance (FISA) Court, which approves NSA requests for bulk metadata collection (including from people who use Verizon), own and keep buying Verizon stock. Judge James Zagel, who has ruled with FISA since 2008, bought stock in the phone and Internet company last May and signed off on a government request to renew the metadata collection program in June of this year. Another judge purchased Verizon stock valued at $15,000 or less last October (investment amounts for government ethics disclosures are revealed within ranges of value). Another FISA Court judge collected a dividend from Verizon stock of less than $1,000. Verizon is the only known telecommunications giant to comply with the NSA’s bulk data collection orders.
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