Data Collection (Part Deux) in Virginia

See yesterday’s article in the Virginian-Pilot.

Again, Virginia law (Section 2.2-3800) is very clear:  government cannot hold personal information in covert databases, which are inaccessible to ordinary citizens.  Nor can it collect this personal data “except as explicitly or implicitly authorized by law.”

Phone records which reveal your cell or home phone numbers are, by definition, records which contain personal information.  While an agency can gather this information by subpoena or warrant for a criminal investigation, it cannot simply hold the data ad nauseam in a regional database until it is deemed relevant.  This is exactly what 2.2-3800 was designed to prevent.

We need some sort of ombudsman (the AG’s office?) to bring everyone into compliance.  The law is already on the books and it’s clear.

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