A broad coalition of companies including Google, Microsoft, and AT&T, joined by liberal and conservative advocacy groups, will announce a major push Tuesday to update federal privacy laws to protect mobile and cloud computing users hoping to convince the U.S. Congress to update a 1986 law--written in the pre-Internet era of telephone modems and the black-and-white Macintosh Plus--to sweep in location privacy and documents stored on the Web.
That law, the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, or ECPA, is notoriously convoluted and difficult even for judges to follow.
Under current law, Internet users enjoy more privacy rights if they store data locally, a legal twist that some companies fear could slow the shift to cloud-based services unless it's changed. "The main thing that's broken about ECPA is that it penalizes you for using cloud computing,".
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