Can the Feds Read Your Email?

Can the Feds Read Your Email?

By Bob Rankin

You might be shocked to learn that there’s very little to prevent government snoops from peeking into your email. But a U.S. Senate committee has just approved greater protection against surreptitious and warrantless searches of people’s electronic communications. Here’s what you need to know about email privacy…

New Protections for Online Privacy on the Horizon
The Leahy-Lee Amendment to the Electronic Communications Privacy Act of 1986 (ECPA) is being hailed as a breakthrough by privacy advocates, but it still faces hurdles before it can become law, and leaves a few loopholes for law enforcement. Even if it becomes law, it may be overridden by the contentious CISPA bill that seeks to expand government cybersleuthing powers. Read on to see what’s happening.

Currently, the ECPA allows “warrantless demands” for electronic communications (email, Facebook, Twitter, etc.) — if such communications have been read by the intended recipients OR if they have not been accessed for more than six months. To obtain unread communications less than six months old requires a warrant to be issued by a judge.

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Excerpt shared with permission from Bob Rankin.

More Information:

Your email is open to government snooping, if it’s old enough
By Graeme McMillan — May 9, 2013 |

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