Key U.S. senator objects to part of Obama spy data plan

Senator Dianne Feinstein is against moving the data out of government control. Credit: REUTERS/Gary Cameron

The head of the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee has objected to President Barack Obama's proposal for the government to give up control of the storage of the telephone records of millions of Americans it holds as part of its counter-terrorism efforts.

Signaling congressional opposition to the change, Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein, who heads the intelligence panel, criticized the idea of moving the data out of government control.

"I think a lot of the privacy people (advocates) perhaps don't understand that we still occupy the role of the 'Great Satan,' new bombs are being devised, new terrorists are emerging, new groups - actually, a new level of viciousness. And I think we need to be prepared," she told the NBC.

Obama on Friday announced an overhaul of U.S. surveillance activities following criticism sparked by the disclosure of leaked documents exposing the wide reach of National Security Agency spy efforts.