Johnson bill introduced to protect cell phone data privacy

Categories: Johnson News,News

Rep. Steve Johnson has introduced House Bill 5572, which would require law enforcement that obtains an individual’s phone records as an indirect circumstance of an investigation either secure a warrant or provide notice that personal information had been accessed.

Currently, law enforcement across the state and nation have access to “stingray” devices, which are mobile units that simulate a cell phone tower and trick nearby phones into giving out private information. Historically, these devices were used overseas in operations against terrorist organizations, but local law enforcement agencies across the country have started to deploy them as well in recent years.

“Having an innocent bystander’s information collected unknown to them the same way as a criminal being investigated by law enforcement is disturbing,” said Johnson, of Wayland. “In this age where technology is advancing by leaps and bounds, it is also important to ensure our Fourth Amendment rights are also being protected by law enforcement as investigations are conducted.”

House Bill 5572 has been referred to the House Communications & Technology Committee for further consideration.