House Bill 2268 expands the tools that law enforcement have at their disposal while affording Texans additional protections concerning our 4th Amendment rights. We task law enforcement with staying up-to-date on these new activities in order to protect all of us." State Representative John Frullo (R-Lubbock)HB 2268 currently sits on Gov. Rick Perrys desk awaiting signature where he has until June 16th to sign or veto the bill. Frullo & Senator John Caronas bill passed both houses of the Texas legislature without a single nay" vote and requires Texas state law enforcement to secure a judges warrant prior to demanding access to private e-mails regardless of the age of the e-mail.
While HB 2268 gives Texans more privacy protection against unwarranted state-level snooping of their inbox it would not protect against federal investigations. If enacted Texas would provide more privacy-conscious protections than the 25-year old 1986 Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) which requires federal law enforcement agencies to produce a warrant to access only recent e-mails that are unopened by the recipient.
In early May a new FBI Domestic Investigations Guide disclosed the FBI believes it has the authority to open e-mail whenever it wants essentially just like other federal agencies.when the governor signs the Frullo-Carona (at right) bill" said Ron Yokubaitis co-CEO of the Austin-based Data Foundry.