Monday 6th February was a great day for privacy indeed as the US House of Representatives voted requiring security agencies to procure warrants before demanding access to “old” emails from technology companies, Reuters reported.
Although technology companies including Microsoft have previously demanded the “Email privacy Act” be updated, the bill failed to pass through the U.S. Senate last year. Before being rejected by the Senate, the bill had unanimously passed through the House of Representatives.
Agencies currently require no more than a subpoena to retrieve old emails & communication data from the servers of technology providers. This benchmark was adopted back in 1986 at the enactment of the ECPA (Electronic Communications Privacy Act). Advocated & supporters of the Email Privacy Act claimed the new bill was a long time due given existing legislation predates the commercial internet itself.
“…While there are disagreements about other aspects of surveillance reform, there is no disagreement that emails and electronic content deserve Fourth Amendment protections…”
Google Inc. Director of Law Enforcement & Information Security
Passing of the Email Privacy Act is a mere battle won for privacy, as President Trump looks to empower surveillance agencies with more spying powers the privacy war rages on. After suggesting he wants to place “some” mosques in the US under constant surveillance and creating a national database for Muslim citizens, President Trump has experienced a massive disapproval across the country.
Read more in the official Reuters report.