Washington — Senators Lee and Leahy have introduced legislation that would offer email and geolocation information comprehensive privacy protections consistent with users’ present-day expectations. The Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) was originally written in 1986 before most individuals’ communications were stored online. The ECPA Modernization Act of 2017 introduced Thursday would update ECPA to clearly give electronic communications and geolocation information Fourth Amendment protections, requiring a warrant before giving government access.
The Computer & Communications Industry Association has advocated for modernization of the Electronic Communications Privacy Act for a decade. The following can be attributed to CCIA President & CEO Ed Black:
“Internet-era privacy reforms are long overdue and we commend Senators Lee and Leahy for their bill to clearly extend Fourth Amendment protections to emails and geolocation information stored in the cloud. As most individuals’ communications are now stored online, law enforcement should obtain a warrant before demanding access. This principle is equally true for the intimate information contained in users’ digitally stored location data. The Lee-Leahy bill will ensure that the Constitution’s protections for individual privacy are reflected in how information is stored and accessed in the 21st Century.”