Use by private citizens is regulated in some states, such as California, where California Penal Code Section 637.7 state:
(a) No person or entity in this state shall use an electronic tracking device to determine the location or movement of a person.
(b) This section shall not apply when the registered owner, lesser, or lessee of a vehicle has consented to the use of the electronic tracking device with respect to that vehicle. Smoke Detector Camera Miami Coral Gables
(c) This section shall not apply to the lawful use of an electronic tracking device by a law enforcement agency.
(d) As used in this section, "electronic tracking device" means any device attached to a vehicle or other movable thing that reveals its location or movement by transmission of electronic signals.
(e) A violation of this section is a misdemeanor. Smoke Detector Camera Miami Coral Gables
(f) A violation of this section by a person, business, firm, company, association, partnership, or corporation licensed under Division 3 (commencing with Section 5000) of the Business and Professions Code shall constitute grounds for revocation of the license issued to that person, business, firm, company, association, partnership, or corporation, pursuant to the provisions that provide for the revocation of the license as set forth in Division 3 (commencing with Section 5000) of the Business and Professions Code. Smoke Detector Camera Miami Coral Gables
Note that 637.7 pertains to all electronic tracking devices, and does not differentiate between those that rely on GPS technology or not. As the laws catch up with the times, it is plausible that all 50 states will eventually enact laws similar to those of California.
Other laws, like the common law invasion of privacy tort as well as state criminal Smoke detector camera Miami Coral Gables
Wiretapping statutes (for example, the wiretapping statute of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, which is extremely restrictive) potentially cover the use of GPS tracking devices by private citizens without consent of the individual being so tracked. Privacy can also be a problem when people use the devices to track the activities of a loved one. GPS tracking devices have also been put on religious statues in order to track the whereabouts of the statue if stolen. Smoke detector camera Miami Coral Gables
In 2009, debate ensued about a Georgia proposal to outlaw hidden GPS tracking, with an exception for law enforcement officers but not for private investigators. See Georgia HB 16 - Electronic tracking device; location of person without consent (2009).
United Kingdom law Smoke Detector Camera Miami Coral Gables
The law in the UK has not specifically addressed the use of GPS Trackers, but several laws may affect the use of this technology as a surveillance tool.
Data Protection Act 1998 Smoke Detector Camera Miami Coral Gables
It is quite clear that if client instructions (written or digitally transmitted) that identify a person and a vehicle are combined with a tracker, the information gathered by the tracker becomes personal data as defined by the Data Protection Act 1998. The document “What is personal data?
A quick reference guide” published by the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) makes clear that data identifying a living individual is personal data. If a living individual can be identified from the data, with or without additional information that may become available, is personal data.
An individual is identified if distinguished from other members of a group. In most cases an individual’s name together with some other information will be sufficient to identify them; but a person can be identified even if their name is not known. Start by looking at the means available to identify an individual and the extent to which such means are readily available to you.
Does the data ‘relate to’ the identifiable living individual, whether in personal or family life, business or profession?
Relates to' means: Data which identifies an individual, even without an associated name, may be personal data which is processed to learn or record something about that individual, or the processing of information that affects the individual. Therefore, data may ‘relate to’ an individual in several different ways.
Is the data ‘obviously about’ a particular individual? Smoke Detector Camera Miami Coral Gables
Data ‘obviously about’ an individual will include his medical history, criminal record, record of his work, or his achievements in a sporting activity. Data that is not ‘obviously about’ a particular individual may include information about his activities. Data such as personal bank statements or itemized telephone bills will be personal data about the individual operating Smoke detector camera Miami Coral Gables
The account or contracting for telephone services. Where data is not ‘obviously about’ an identifiable individual it may be helpful to consider whether the data is being processed, or could easily be processed, to learn, record or decide something about an identifiable individual. Information may be personal data where the aim, or an incidental consequence, of the processing, is that you learn or record something about an identifiable individual, or the processing could affect an identifiable individual. Smoke detector camera Miami Coral Gables
Data from a Tracker would be to identify the individual or his activities. It is therefore personal data within the meaning of the Data Protection Act 1998.
Any individual who wishes to gather personal data must be registered with the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) and have a DPA number. It is a criminal offence to process data and not have a DPA number Smoke detector camera Miami Coral Gables
Trespass Smoke Detector Camera Miami Coral Gables
It may be a civil trespass to deploy a tracker onto a car not belonging to your client or to yourself. But in the OSC’s annual inspection, the OSC’s Chief Surveillance Commissioner Sir Christopher Rose stated “putting an arm into a wheel arch or under the frame of a vehicle is straining the concept of trespass“.
However, entering private land of anyone in order to deploy a tracker is clearly a trespass which is a civil tort. Smoke detector camera Miami Coral Gables
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