Utah is the first in the nation to have an electronic data privacy law

Posted at 7:44 PM, Mar 27, 2019

SALT LAKE CITY — Utah is the first in the nation to have an electronic data privacy law.

On Wednesday night, Governor Gary Herbert signed House Bill 57, sponsored by Rep. Craig Hall, R-West Valley City. It requires police to get a warrant if they want to look at your emails, instant messages, direct messages and other forms of electronic communication, including shared files.

FOX 13 first reported on Rep. Hall’s legislation last year. He argued that a subpoena was insufficient and you shouldn’t lose Fourth Amendment protections because your data goes through a third-party like Facebook, Google or Dropbox.

“We need to make sure that our digital and our electronic information is protected. Just because it goes through wires, just because it goes in the cloud doesn’t mean we lose an expectation of privacy,” he told FOX 13 at the time.

Connor Boyack of the libertarian-leaning think tank, Libertas Institute, advocated for the bill and praised the governor’s decision to sign it into law.

“The U.S. Supreme Court recently required that our cell phone location data be protected by a warrant, which is a small step in the right direction. Utah’s new law takes that principle and puts it on steroids, applying it to all of our electronic data,” he said in a statement. “This first-in-the-nation law makes clear that if the government wants our data—whether it’s on our phone or on a company’s server somewhere else—they have to get a warrant. It’s a good policy that we’ll be encouraging other states to soon adopt.”

The bill was among 92 bills Gov. Herbert signed into law on Wednesday night. To date, he has signed 464 bills from the 2019 legislative session. Here are other bills signed:

Current and New Fiscal Year Supplemental Appropriations Act, Last, B.

State Agency and Higher Education Compensation Appropriations, Moss, J.

State Monuments Act Amendments, Eliason, S.

Victim Communications Amendments, Snow, V.

Electronic Information or Data Privacy, Hall, C.

Lobbyist Expenditures Amendments, McKell, M.

Sex Offender Registry Amendments, Christensen, A.

Sexual Violence Protective Orders, Snow, V.

Quantity Impairment Modifications, Albrecht, C.

Domestic Violence Enhancement Amendments, Pitcher, S.

State Reptile, Snow, V.

Voluntary Commitment of a Firearm Amendments, Maloy, A.

Transparency Website Amendments, Daw, B.

Expungement Changes, Barlow, S.

Unlawful Installation of a Tracking Device, Poulson, M.

Towing Revisions, Maloy A.

Land Transfer Amendments, Brammer, B.

Domestic Violence Modifications, Watkins, C.

Community Reinvestment Agency Revisions, Winder, M.

Drug Diversion Reporting Requirements, Eliason, S.

Criminal Code Amendments, McKell, M.

Court Reporter Amendments, Knotwell, J.

Driver License Record Amendments, Perry, L.

Driver License Renewal Amendments, Robertson, A.

Offender Registry Amendments, Dunnigan, J.

Hit and Run Amendments, Eliason, S.

Land Use and Development Amendments, Wilde, L.

Inmate Restrictions Standards Amendments, Pitcher, S.

Domestic Violence — Weapons Amendments, King, B.

General Damages Amendments, Waldrip, S.

Juvenile Justice Competency Revisions, Hawkins, J.

Criminal Code Task Force Changes, Ray, P.

Utah Emergency Medical Services System Act Amendments, Christofferson, K.

Mobile Carrier Amendments, Barlow, S.

Special Group License Plate Amendments, Ivory, K.

Health Care Amendments, Dunnigan, J.

Lewdness Statute Modification, Brooks, W.

Investigation Protocols for Peace Officer Use of Force, Roberts, M.

Disaster Recovery Fund Amendments, Ferry, J.

Bail  Bond Amendments, Lisonbee, K.

Prohibition of Genital Mutilation, Ivory, K.

Inland Port Amendments, Gibson, F.

Disease Testing Amendments, Stoddard, A.

Commission on Criminal and Juvenile Justice Amendments, Hutchings, E.

At-Risk Government Employee Information Protection Amendments, Perry, L.

Alcohol Amendments, Hawkes, T.

Background Check Amendments, Perry, L.

Pediatric Neuro-Rehabilitation Fund, Hutchings, E.

Criminal Information Amendments, Ray, P.

Concurrent Resolution urging the United States Drug Enforcement Administration to Approve a Pharmaceutical Drop Box Pilot Program, Daw, B.

Concurrent Resolution Supporting Renewable and Sustainable Energy Options to Promote Rural Economic Development, Arent, P.

Concurrent Resolution Supporting Utah’s Every Kid Outdoors Initiative, Arent, P.

Concurrent Resolution Commending Jordan School District on its Fleet of Natural Gas School Buses, Acton, C.

Concurrent Resolution to Address Declining Water Levels of the Great Salt Lake, Hawkes, T.

Concurrent Resolution Encouraging Utah Refiners to Manufacture Tier 3 Gasoline to Improve Air Quality, Arent, P.

Concurrent Resolution Commemorating the 150th Anniversary of the Golden Spike, Ferry, J.

Concurrent Resolution Concerning Bear Lake, Wilde, L.

New and Current Fiscal Year Supplemental Appropriations Act, Stevenson, J.

Public Education Budget Adjustments, Hillyard, L.

State Agency Fees and internal Service Fund Rate Authorization and Appropriations, Ipson, D.

Revenue Bonds and Capital Facilities Authorizations, Cullimore, K.

Identification Request Amendments, Mayne, K.

FDIC Premium Deduction Amendments, Stevenson, J.

Extraterritorial Jurisdiction Amendments, Okerlund, R.

Sunset Reauthorization – Commission for the Stewardship of Public Lands, Grover, K.

State Energy Policy Amendments, Grover, K.

Governmental Nonprofit Corporation Act Amendments, Henderson, D.

Governmental Nonprofit Corporation Meetings Amendments, Henderson, D.

Income Tax Revisions, Bramble, C.

Mental Health Amendments, Fillore, L.

Criminal Provisions Modifications, Mayne, K.

Street-Legal ATV Amendments, Fillmore, L.

Domestic Violence Revisions, Christensen, A.

Consumer Ticket Protection Amendments, Henderson, D.

Dealership Licensing Amendments, Ipson, D.

Third Judicial District Judge Amendments, Weiler, T.

Electronic Driver Licenses, Fillmore, L.

Utah Apprenticeship Act, Anderegg, J.

Motor Assisted Transportation Amendments, Cullimore, K.

Judiciary Amendments, Hillyard, L.

Property Tax Reporting Modifications, Fillmore, L.

Transportation Code Revisions, Harper, W.

Executive Branch Ethics Commission Amendments, Bramble, C.

Presidential Primary Amendments, Bramble, C.

State Treasurer Amendments, Cullimore, K.

Parental Defense Office Amendments, Harper, W.

Construction Code for Historic Preservation, Davis, G.

Interest Rates Amendments, Bramble, D.

Sales Representative Commission Payment Act Amendments, Cullimore, K.

Medical Treatment Authorization Amendments, Vickers, E.

Concurrent Resolution Regarding Navajo Water Rights Settlement Agreement, Hinkins, D.

Concurrent Resolution Honoring Orem on its 100th Anniversary, Hemmert, D.