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New Cell Phone "Kill-Switch" Laws


This week, Minnesota passed a law to deter cell phone theft. The "kill switch" bill requires phones and tablets sold in Minnesota to contain a shut-off feature that can be controlled remotely. The feature will allow those with lost or stolen phones to disable and clear the data on the phone. The law additionally states requirements for stores not to accept cash for used smartphones and tablets, and other increased regulations. Federal statistics suggest that for every three robberies, one involves the theft of a phone. The University of Minnesota had several incidents of phone robberies this year, increasing pressure for new legislation.

The law takes full effect in July 2015, but many hope the technology will update sooner. In addition, similar bills are pending in other states and on a federal level. While critics of the law worry it will stifle innovation, advocates hope that disabling stolen phones will drive down the incentive to steal smartphones. Additionally, some consumers are worried about potential control of the cell phones through these technological advancements. While the privacy discussion does not seem to be at the core of the Minnesota "Kill-Switch" law, in the age of social media and rapid technological advancements, it is important to be aware of privacy rights.

The amount of information that is available to others about each of us is vast. Protecting that information should be a priority. However, if something does happen and you need legal representation relating to electronic information and privacy, Meyerkord and Meyerkord, LLC can help. We are an experienced group of attorneys that have navigated the complicated interplay between the virtual world and the law. Our law firm developed case law in Missouri known as "false light" which can help a party injured by social media. Please contact us at (314) 436-9958 or (800) 391-4318 to schedule a no-obligation meeting with an experienced Internet privacy rights attorney.

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**The information on this St. Louis personal injury website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship.**


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