Senator Coons Pushes Bill To End Stalking Apps - 47 ABC - Delmarva's Choice

Senator Coons Pushes Bill To End Stalking Apps

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WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Chris Coons (D-Del.) and Al Franken (D-Minn.) are once again pushing legislation to protect Americans' personal privacy.

According to reports, this time, they are pushing a bill that would end stalking apps, which abusers can put on victims' smartphones to secretly track their location. Legislation they introduced Thursday would reportedly require companies to get consumers' permission before collecting location data off their smartphones, tablets, or in-car navigation devices like OnStar and Garmin, and would also require permission before sharing location information with third parties.

Reports say the Location Privacy Protection Act is built on similar legislation they first introduced in 2012, which passed out of the Senate Judiciary Committee with bipartisan support. Officials say their updated legislation would:

  • Require that companies get individuals' permission before collecting location data off of their smartphones, tablets, or in-car navigation devices, and before sharing it with others. This rule doesn't apply to parents tracking kids, emergencies, and similar scenarios;
  • Stymie GPS stalking by preventing companies from collecting location data in secret;
  • Require that any company that collects the location data of 1,000 or more devices publicly disclose the data they're collecting, what they do with it, who they share it with, and how people can stop that collection or sharing;
  • Ban the development, operation, and sale of GPS stalking apps--and allow law enforcement to seize the proceeds of those sales to fund anti-stalking efforts; and
  • Require that the federal government gather more information about GPS stalking, facilitate reporting of GPS stalking, and prioritize training grants for law enforcement.

To view a more detailed summary of the bill, click here.

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