We can't say as though we're particularly surprised to see such numbers, but, well, at least they're finally coming to light. According to The Washington Post, newly declassified court documents highlight how the NSA collected up to 56,000 e-mails per year, over a three year period. The docs detail why the collection of such "wholly domestic" information was ruled unconstitutional by a judge in the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, though the NSA stated that the surveillance was unintentional, adding that it reported said information to the court. As part of the ruling, the intelligence agency was required to investigate limits to its data collection -- the NSA claims to have since addressed the problem. The newly available information was made public thanks to a recently field EFF lawsuit.
Update: Want to crawl through some of that information? The White House has begun posting key docs to Tumblr, of all places.