H.R.2168 - Geolocational Privacy and Surveillance Act
To amend title 18, United States Code, to specify the circumstances in which a person may acquire geolocation information and for other purposes.
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Mr. CHAFFETZ (for himself and Mr. GOODLATTE) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary, and in addition to the Select Committee on Intelligence (Permanent Select), for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee concernedCommentsClose CommentsPermalink
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLES.
SEC. 2. PROTECTION OF GEOLOCATION INFORMATION.
‘CHAPTER 120--GEOLOCATION INFORMATION
‘Sec. 2601. Definitions
‘(2) ELECTRONIC SURVEILLANCE- The term ‘electronic surveillance’ has the meaning given that term in section 101 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 (
50 U.S.C. 1801).CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(3) GEOLOCATION INFORMATION- The term ‘geolocation information’ means, with respect to a person, any information that is not the content of a communication, concerning the location of a wireless communication device or tracking device (as that term is defined section 3117) that, in whole or in part, is generated by or derived from the operation of that device and that could be used to determine or infer information regarding the location of the person.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(4) GEOLOCATION INFORMATION SERVICE- The term ‘geolocation information service’ means the provision of a global positioning service or other mapping, locational, or directional information service to the public, or to such class of users as to be effectively available to the public, by or through the operation of any wireless communication device, including any mobile telephone, global positioning system receiving device, mobile computer, or other similar or successor device.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(6) INVESTIGATIVE OR LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER- The term ‘investigative or law enforcement officer’ means any officer of the United States or of a State or political subdivision thereof, who is empowered by law to conduct investigations of, or to make arrests for, offenses enumerated in this chapter, and any attorney authorized by law to prosecute or participate in the prosecution of such offenses.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(7) PERSON- The term ‘person’ means any employee or agent of the United States, or any State or political subdivision thereof, and any individual, partnership, association, joint stock company, trust, or corporation.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(9) STATE- The term ‘State’ means any State of the United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and any territory or possession of the United States.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(10) WIRELESS COMMUNICATION DEVICE- The term ‘wireless communication device’ means any device that enables access to, or use of, an electronic communication system or service, remote computing service, or geolocation information service, if that device utilizes a radio or other wireless connection to access such system or service.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘Sec. 2602. Interception and disclosure of geolocation information
‘(A) intentionally intercept, endeavor to intercept, or procure any other person to intercept or endeavor to intercept, geolocation information pertaining to another person;CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(B) intentionally disclose, or endeavor to disclose, to any other person geolocation information pertaining to another person, knowing or having reason to know that the information was obtained through the interception of such information in violation of this paragraph;CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(C) intentionally use, or endeavor to use, any geolocation information, knowing or having reason to know that the information was obtained through the interception of such information in violation of this paragraph; orCommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(D)(i) intentionally disclose, or endeavor to disclose, to any other person the geolocation information pertaining to another person intercepted by means authorized by subsections (b) through (h), except as provided in such subsections;CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(b) Exception for Information Acquired in the Normal Course of Business- It shall not be unlawful under this chapter for an officer, employee, or agent of a provider of covered services, whose facilities are used in the transmission of geolocation information, to intercept, disclose, or use that information in the normal course of the officer, employee, or agent’s employment while engaged in any activity which is a necessary incident to the rendition of service or to the protection of the rights or property of the provider of that service, except that a provider of a geolocation information service to the public shall not utilize service observing or random monitoring except for mechanical or service quality control checks.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(c) Exception for Conducting Foreign Intelligence Surveillance- Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, it shall not be unlawful for an officer, employee, or agent of the United States in the normal course of the official duty of the officer, employee, or agent to conduct electronic surveillance, as authorized by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 (
50 U.S.C. 1801et seq.).CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(1) IN GENERAL- It shall not be unlawful under this chapter for a person to intercept geolocation information pertaining to another person if such other person has given prior consent to such interception unless such information is intercepted for the purpose of committing any criminal or tortious act in violation of the Constitution or laws of the United States or of any State.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(2) CHILDREN- The exception in paragraph (1) permits a parent or legal guardian of a child to intercept geolocation information pertaining to that child or to give consent for another person to intercept such information.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(e) Exception for Public Information- It shall not be unlawful under this chapter for any person to intercept or access geolocation information relating to another person through any system that is configured so that such information is readily accessible to the general public.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(f) Exception for Emergency Information- It shall not be unlawful under this chapter for any investigative or law enforcement officer or other emergency responder to intercept or access geolocation information relating to a person if such information is used--CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(g) Exception for Theft or Fraud- It shall not be unlawful under this chapter for a person acting under color of law to intercept geolocation information pertaining to the location of another person who has unlawfully taken the device sending the geolocation information if--CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(2) WARRANT- A governmental entity may intercept geolocation information or require the disclosure by a provider of covered services of geolocation information only pursuant to a warrant issued using the procedures described in the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure (or, in the case of a State court, issued using State warrant procedures) by a court of competent jurisdiction, or as otherwise provided in this chapter or the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 (
50 U.S.C. 1801et seq.).CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(1) IN GENERAL- Except as provided in paragraph (2), a person providing covered services shall not intentionally divulge geolocation information pertaining to another person.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(D) which was inadvertently obtained by the service provider and which appears to pertain to the commission of a crime, if such divulgence is made to a law enforcement agency.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘Sec. 2603. Prohibition of use as evidence of acquired geolocation information
‘Whenever any geolocation information has been acquired, no part of such information and no evidence derived therefrom may be received in evidence in any trial, hearing, or other proceeding in or before any court, grand jury, department, officer, agency, regulatory body, legislative committee, or other authority of the United States, a State, or a political subdivision thereof if the disclosure of that information would be in violation of this chapter.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘Sec. 2604. Emergency situation exception
‘(a) Emergency Situation Exception- Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, any investigative or law enforcement officer, specially designated by the Attorney General, the Deputy Attorney General, the Associate Attorney General, or by the principal prosecuting attorney of any State or subdivision thereof acting pursuant to a statute of that State, may intercept geolocation information if--CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(1) TERMINATION OF ACQUISITION- In the absence of an order, an interception of geolocation information carried out under subsection (a) shall immediately terminate when the information sought is obtained or when the application for the order is denied, whichever is earlier.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(2) PROHIBITION ON USE AS EVIDENCE- In the event such application for approval is denied, the geolocation information shall be treated as having been obtained in violation of this chapter and an inventory shall be served on the person named in the application.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘Sec. 2605. Recovery of civil damages authorized
‘(a) In General- Any person whose geolocation information is intercepted, disclosed, or intentionally used in violation of this chapter may in a civil action recover from the person, other than the United States, which engaged in that violation such relief as may be appropriate.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(d) Defense- It is a complete defense against any civil or criminal action brought against an individual for conduct in violation of this chapter if such individual acted in a good faith reliance on--CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(e) Limitation- A civil action under this section may not be commenced later than two years after the date upon which the claimant first has a reasonable opportunity to discover the violation.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(f) Administrative Discipline- If a court or appropriate department or agency determines that the United States or any of its departments or agencies has violated any provision of this chapter, and the court or appropriate department or agency finds that the circumstances surrounding the violation raise serious questions about whether or not an officer or employee of the United States acted willfully or intentionally with respect to the violation, the department or agency shall, upon receipt of a true and correct copy of the decision and findings of the court or appropriate department or agency promptly initiate a proceeding to determine whether disciplinary action against the officer or employee is warranted. If the head of the department or agency involved determines that disciplinary action is not warranted, such head shall notify the Inspector General with jurisdiction over the department or agency concerned and shall provide the Inspector General with the reasons for such determination.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(g) Improper Disclosure Is Violation- Any willful disclosure or use by an investigative or law enforcement officer or governmental entity of information beyond the extent permitted by this chapter is a violation of this chapter for purposes of this section.’.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
SEC. 3. REQUIREMENT FOR SEARCH WARRANTS TO ACQUIRE GEOLOCATION INFORMATION.
SEC. 4. FRAUD AND RELATED ACTIVITY IN CONNECTION WITH OBTAINING GEOLOCATION INFORMATION.
(3) CHAPTER ANALYSIS- The table of sections for chapter 47 of title 18, United States Code, is amended by striking the item relating to section 1039 and inserting the following:CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(1) REVIEW AND AMENDMENT- Not later than 180 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the United States Sentencing Commission, pursuant to its authority under
(2) AUTHORIZATION- The United States Sentencing Commission may amend the Federal sentencing guidelines in accordance with the procedures set forth in section 21(a) of the Sentencing Act of 1987 (
SEC. 5. STATEMENT OF EXCLUSIVE MEANS OF ACQUIRING GEOLOCATION INFORMATION.
(a) In General- No person may acquire the geolocation information of a person for protective activities or law enforcement or intelligence purposes except pursuant to a warrant issued pursuant to rule 41 of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure, as amended by section 3, or the amendments made by this Act, or the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 (
(b) Geolocation Information Defined- In this section, the term ‘geolocation information’ has the meaning given that term in