President Obama is defending his administration’s use of a data collection program, known as PRISM. Leaked NSA documents show that the federal government has been monitoring phone calls made in the United States. The documents show intelligence agencies have also been tracking Internet activity.

News of the program was first reported by the British newspaper, The Guardian. According to the report, PRISM was used to extract audio, video, photos, and emails from some of the biggest Internet companies, including Google and Microsoft.

The Obama administration insists its actions are legal. Officials say the data isn’t reviewed unless investigators have reason to believe it’s tied to terrorism.

“I think it is important to recognize that you can’t have 100 percent security and then also have 100 percent privacy and zero inconvenience.  You know, we are going to have to make some choices as a society,”  President Obama said Friday.

Word of the NSA surveillance techniques has outraged lawmakers in both parties. Kentucky Senator Rand Paul launched the first strike against the activity Friday. He is proposing a bill that requires a warrant before any government agency can search Americans’ phone records.

Sen. Ted Cruz has also been highly critical of the government’s tactics. Read his full statement, below the jump.

We should always be mindful of the need for government to have the tools necessary to keep Americans safe in a dangerous world, where there are enemies plotting to attack us. We have seen the face of that enemy time and again, most recently in the terrorist attacks at Fort Hood, Benghazi and Boston to name a few.

But on one hand the Obama Administration says this enemy is in retreat, yet on the other, they are implementing what appears to be an unprecedented and intrusive surveillance system on private American citizens in the name of guarding against that enemy. Just today, the president encouraged us to trust him on this – to trust that there are safeguards to ensure our privacy is protected, trust that there is a system of checks and balances to prevent an abuse of power. But in light of this Administration’s track record, how can they expect to be trusted?

We have discovered over the past few months an ongoing pattern of wanton disregard not only for Americans’ privacy, but for the truth – DOJ’s refusal to be forthcoming about drone policy, IRS’s targeting groups for their political beliefs and then misleading the American people about it, DOJ’s targeting of journalists for doing their jobs, and now what seems an unprecedented intrusion into Americans’ personal phone records and potentially into their broader online activities.

Americans trusted President Obama when he came to office promising the most transparent administration in history. But that trust has been broken and the only way to earn it back is to tell the truth. That’s what Americans deserve. I will be working with my colleagues in the Senate who share my concerns to ensure that we have all the facts about these surveillance programs, and that our government is appropriately balancing concerns of national security with Americans’ personal liberties.