Bipartisan legislation has been introduced in Congress to require that government agents obtain a warrant from a judge if they want to demand that service providers disclose stored email or track people using their cell phones (subject, of course, to emergency exceptions). The Online Communications and Geolocation Protection Act, (H.R. 983), introduced in the House of Representatives on March 6, was co-sponsored by Reps. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), Ted Poe (R-TX) and Suzanne DelBene (D-WA).
It is highly significant that the first bill introduced this year on reform of the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) is bipartisan and that it addresses both disclosure of stored communications and location tracking.
The legislation would codify two key recommendations of Digital Due Process, a remarkably broad coalition of tech companies, advocates across the political spectrum, think tanks, and academics who are pushing to update ECPA to extend the Constitution’s traditional protections to new technologies.