Summary: H.R.424 — 98th Congress (1983-1984)All Information (Except Text)

There is one summary for H.R.424. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

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Introduced in House (01/03/1983)

Federal Privacy of Telephone Records Act - States as a purpose of this Act the protection of private telecommunications records from unwarranted disclosure.

Amends the Privacy Act to prohibit any Federal agency from disclosing telephone record information to any person except: (1) upon written consent of the customer to whom the information pertains; (2) to a U.S. attorney who determines that disclosure is required for a proceeding before a court or grand jury which arose out of the investigation for which the information was acquired; or (3) to a Federal authority for the purpose of conducting intelligence activities.

Requires that a telephone record custodian be designated in each Federal agency which maintains telephone record information to carry out such requirement.

Amends the Communications Act of 1934 to prohibit a service provider from disclosing telephone record information except to a Government authority under specified circumstances or with the specific authorization of the customer identified by the record. States that record information may be disclosed which does not identify a particular customer.

Sets forth the procedures by which a supervisory officer of a Federal agency may obtain an administrative or judicial summons or subpoena to obtain telephone information from a service provider.

Authorizes the Attorney General to permit application to Federal court for an order to acquire telephone record information from a service provider or to intercept such information when such acquisition or interception may provide evidence of a Federal criminal offense constituting a felony.

Authorizes the Attorney General or a State criminal prosecutor to permit such an application to a State court when the acquisition or interception may provide evidence of a criminal offense involving murder, kidnapping, robbery, extortion, forgery, bribery, embezzlement, fraud, racketeering, or any other crime punishable by more than one year's imprisonment which threatens serious injury or damage.

Specifies the content of such applications. Permits the court to issue an ex parte order permitting the acquisition or interception if: (1) there is probable cause to believe a crime is being committed; (2) there is probable cause that the information will be relevant to such offense; and (3) alternative investigative procedures have failed or are unlikely to succeed. Specifies the content of any such court order.

Permits a law enforcement officer designated by the Attorney General or State attorney general to intercept or acquire telephone record information notwithstanding the application requirements if: (1) an emergency situation exists; (2) there are grounds upon which an order could be obtained; and (3) an application is made within 48 hours.

Permits a special agent of the Secret Service to acquire or intercept telephone record information notwithstanding the application requirements to carry out the protective function of the Secret Service upon authorization of the Director and certification to a Federal court within 48 hours that the acquisition or interception is occurring.

Requires that the persons named in any order or application be notified of the termination of an order or denial of an application within a reasonable time up to 120 days after such termination. Permits the court to delay such notice if there is reasonable cause to believe that it would endanger any person's safety or result in flight from prosecution, destruction of evidence, or intimidation of witnesses.

Establishes criminal penalties for the intentional disclosure of telephone record information in violation of this Act. Permits an aggrieved person to maintain a civil action for damages and equitable relief in district court. Establishes an exclusionary rule with respect to information obtained in violation of this Act.