WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. government said on Friday that the secret court that oversees U.S. surveillance programs has granted its request to continue seeking certain telephone records of Americans.

The Office of the Director of National Intelligence said its authority to maintain the program expired on July 19 and that the government had sought and received a renewal from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act court.

The government is disclosing the renewal as part of an effort at greater transparency after former intelligence contractor Edward Snowden leaked details of top-secret U.S. surveillance programs to the media.

(Reporting By Karey Van Hall; editing by Christopher Wilson)