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Cellphone Privacy

| October 7, 2013

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AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) – Maine law enforcement will have to get search warrants to gather emails, text messages or data about someone’s recent location from a cellphone under two new laws that take effect this week.
The laws go into effect on Wednesday, 90 days following the end of the legislative session in July.

Supporters say the measures are essential because the related federal law is woefully out of date, leaving residents’ privacy vulnerable as technology has advanced.

But Attorney General Janet Mills’ office and Maine State Police fiercely opposed the bills last session, saying they are both unnecessary and could hamper criminal investigations.

The new laws also require law enforcement to notify someone within three days if their information has been collected, unless they can prove it would adversely impact an investigation.

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