It now appears that the government's perusal of phone records of the Associated Press and Fox News may only have been the tip of the iceberg so far as government surveillance goes and that The National Security Agency (NSA) has been collecting phone records of millions of U.S. customers who use the Verizon mobile phone service -- whether suspected of wrongdoing or not. According to Britain's Guardian newspaper, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court granted unlimited authority for the government to obtain the data over a three-month period that ends July 19. The newspaper suggested that other major mobile networks may also have been targeted. The Guardian report brought an immediate response from former Vice President Al Gore, who tweeted, In digital era, privacy must be a priority. Is it just me, or is secret blanket surveillance obscenely outrageous? Jameel Jaffer, the deputy legal director of the ACLU, called it beyond Orwellian. However, the White House defended the surveillance activity, calling it a critical tool in protecting the nation from terrorist threats.