Tag Archives: SCA

House Members Reintroduce Email Privacy Act

On January 9, 2017, Representatives Kevin Yoder (R-Kan.) and Jared Polis (D-Colo.) reintroduced the Email Privacy Act.  According to Rep. Yoder’s spokesman, the text of the bill is similar to the version the House of Representatives unanimously approved last April, but which did not pass the Senate.  As we previously reported, the proposed changes would … Continue Reading

House Unanimously Passes Email Privacy Act

On April 27, the House of Representative unanimously passed the Email Privacy Act.  As previously reported, the proposed changes would strengthen the privacy protections for email and other cloud-storage services by closing a loophole that allowed law enforcement to access older data without obtaining a warrant. However, while there is widespread support to require warrants … Continue Reading

House Judiciary Committee Approves Email Privacy Act

In a unanimous vote, the House Judiciary Committee approved the Email Privacy Act, a long-awaited update to the 30-year-old Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA).  The proposed changes would strengthen the privacy protections for email and other cloud-storage services by closing a loophole that allowed law enforcement to access older data without obtaining a warrant.  The … Continue Reading

Eleventh Circuit: Warrant Required to Obtain Cell Site Location Information

The Eleventh Circuit ruled on June 11 that cell site location information—which can reveal the location of a cell phone user, based on his proximity to cell phone towers—is protected by the Fourth Amendment and can only be obtained with a warrant.  That ruling sets the stage for continued battles over Fourth Amendment protections for … Continue Reading

CA Passes Legislation Requiring Search Warrant For Disclosure of Stored Content

Continuing a flurry of recent legislative activity (see posts here and here), the California legislature on Tuesday passed a bill requiring that California law enforcement agencies obtain a search warrant to compel the production of communications content (e.g., emails and social media messages) from providers of electronic communication services.  A service provider may provide stored content … Continue Reading

Federal Court Finds Stored Communications Act Applies to Facebook Wall Posts

A New Jersey federal court recently held that an employee’s Facebook wall posts were protected by the Stored Communications Act (“SCA”), 18 U.S.C. § 2701 et seq., in one of the first cases to analyze the SCA’s application to the Facebook wall.  Ehling v. Monmouth-Ocean Hospital Service Corp.., No. 2:11-cv-3305 (WMJ) (D.N.J. Aug. 20, 2013).  An … Continue Reading

5th Circuit Rules That Cell Phones Are Not “Facilities” Under SCA

Yesterday the Fifth Circuit ruled in Garcia v. City of San Laredo that personal cell phones are not “facilities” under the Stored Communications Act (SCA), agreeing with a growing number of courts that have reached the same conclusion.  In reaching this decision, the court rejected the claim of plaintiff Garcia, a former police dispatcher for the … Continue Reading

Judiciary Committee May Consider Amendments to VPPA, ECPA

According to a number of media outlets, the Senate Judiciary Committee will consider proposed amendments to the Video Privacy Protection Act (“VPPA”) and to Title II of the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, better known as the Stored Communications Act (“SCA”).  The amendments reportedly will be offered by Judiciary Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT), and likely will … Continue Reading

Low Case Against LinkedIn Dismissed In Its Entirety

Yesterday, deeming LinkedIn’s motion to dismiss suitable for decision without oral argument, Judge Koh of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California dismissed all eight claims in Low v. LinkedIn with prejudice, ending this litigation.  Covington successfully represented LinkedIn in this case, in which plaintiffs alleged that the purported transmittal to certain third … Continue Reading

Court Won’t Undo Dismissal of in re Facebook Privacy Litigation

Last week, Judge Ware of the Northern District of California denied a motion to amend his November 2011 dismissal, with prejudice, in In re Facebook Privacy Litigation, a case in which plaintiffs had argued that Facebook improperly transmitted users’ personal information, including User ID numbers or usernames, to third party advertisers. In his most recent … Continue Reading

Virginia District Court Issues Significant Ruling Upholding Government Access to Non-Content User Data

by David Fagan and Alex Berengaut On November 10, 2011, Judge Liam O’Grady of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia issued a 60-page memorandum opinion in a dispute over the validity of a special court order issued to Twitter for non-content records for certain users connected to the government’s Wikileaks … Continue Reading

Sixth Circuit Finds Reasonable Expectation of Privacy in E-mails

On Tuesday, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in U.S. v. Warshak [PDF] that the government may not compel a commercial Internet service provider to turn over the contents of a subscriber’s e-mails without first obtaining a warrant based on probable cause.  The court recognized fundamental similarities between e-mail and more traditional forms of communication, such as … Continue Reading
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