Congress will have another crack at a data privacy topic close to Microsoft’s heart.
A trio of Senators on Thursday introduced a bill that would limit the scope of U.S. law enforcement to reach data stored abroad.
The bill, sponsored by Republican Sens. Orrin Hatch and Dean Heller, and Democratic Sen. Chris Coons, would amend the Electronic Communications Privacy Act to prevent prosecutors from grabbing data stored abroad unless the owner of the data was a U.S. person or company. The measure would also give courts the ability to void or modify warrants seeking foreign-stored data from service providers if the court finds that turning that data over would violate the laws of a foreign country.
Hatch introduced the same bill — dubbed the LEADS Act — last year, but it didn’t go anywhere before Congress adjourned. LEADS stands, clumsily, for “Law Enforcement Access to Data Stored Abroad.”
Microsoft, caught between government demands and its effort to reassure customers that their data is free from improper government collection, has campaigned for such a policy tweak.More