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Internet companies and consumer advocates are warning that the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) is outdated, "affording more protection to letters in a file cabinet than e-mail on a server," The New York Times reports. With Internet services providing storage for e-mails, photographs, financial documents and a range of other private information, while law enforcement agencies may be sending out requests "for legitimate criminal investigations," some companies are calling for a requirement for search warrants approved by courts rather than subpoenas from prosecutors. Given that ECPA was drafted in 1986, before such widespread use of cell phones and e-mail, one expert notes, "The law can't be expected to keep up without amendments." (Registration may be required to access this story.)
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