The Washington post 
August 16, 2013
At a news conference Friday, President Obama insisted  that the threat of NSA abuses was mostly theoretical:
If you look at the reports, even the disclosures that Mr. Snowden’s put forward, all the stories that have been written, what you’re not reading about is the government actually abusing these programs and, you know, listening in on people’s phone calls or inappropriately reading people’s e-mails.
What you’re hearing about is the prospect that these could be abused. Now part of the reason they’re not abused is because they’re — these checks are in place, and those abuses would be against the law and would be against the orders of the FISC [Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court].
Today our colleague Barton Gellman released new documents  that contradicted Obama’s claims.
Gellman obtained an audit of the NSA’s compliance record from NSA leaker Snowden earlier this summer. The audit, dated May 2012, counted 2,776 incidents in the preceding 12 months where the agency engaged in “unauthorized collection, storage, access to or distribution of legally protected communications.” The audit only covered issues at NSA facilities in the D.C. and Fort Meade areas.
Full story here.