WASHINGTON – January 9, 2017 – BSA | The Software Alliance welcomes the introduction of the Email Privacy Act of 2017 in the House of Representatives. The legislation would update the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) – a decades-old law that sets standards for government access to private internet communications – to ensure that law enforcement has a warrant before accessing a person’s online data stored in the cloud, such as emails, texts, notes, photos, and other sensitive information.
“Our use of and reliance on technology has greatly evolved in the 30 years since ECPA was enacted,” said Victoria Espinel, President and CEO of BSA | The Software Alliance. “It is important that Congress modernize the law to match users’ expectations for the privacy of their data in the cloud.”
This bill was previously introduced in the 114th Congress as H.R. 699 and passed unanimously in the House. BSA commends Reps. Kevin Yoder (R-KS), Jared Polis (D-CO), Bob Goodlatte (R-VA), John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI), Doug Collins (R-GA), Will Hurd (R-TX), Ted Poe (R-TX), Suzan DelBene (D-WA), Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), and Judy Chu (D-CA) for reintroducing the legislation and looks forward to working with the 115th Congress to pass it. Looking ahead, ECPA will need reforms that address international law enforcement access to data issues.