National Security Agency Director Keith Alexander urged Americans Wednesday to help convince Congress not to place more restraints on the agency.
"We need your help. We need to get these facts out," Alexander said in a cyber security conference at the National Press Club, The Hill reports.
"We need our nation to understand why we need these tools."
If Congress curbs the NSA's information-gathering authority
, the United States will be open to terrorist attacks like the horrific incident at a Nairobi mall, Alexander said.
"If you take those [surveillance powers] away, think about the last week and what will happen in the future," he said. "If you think it's bad now, wait until you get some of those things that happened in Nairobi."
The nation's surveillance programs are important for "connecting the dots" and preventing terrorist attacks, Alexander insisted.
"I can tell you, although I can't go into detail, it provides the speed and agility in crises like the Boston Marathon and the threats this summer," he added.
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