WASHINGTON - US President Barack Obama announced plans on Friday to limit sweeping US government surveillance programs that have come under criticism since leaks by a former spy agency contractor.
"Given the history of abuse by governments, it's right to ask questions about surveillance, particularly as technology is reshaping every aspect of our lives," Obama told a news conference at the White House.
Obama said he was unveiling specific steps to improve oversight of surveillance and restore public trust in the government's programs.
Senior administration officials said earlier that Obama would call on Congress to work with him to rein in the National Security Agency's collection of Internet and phone data.
The announcement - made just before Obama heads for summer vacation on Martha's Vineyard - may be greeted as at least a partial victory for supporters of ex-NSA contractor Edward Snowden who is now in Russia, where he was granted asylum last week.