Michigan voters will decide in November whether to amend the state constitution to include electronic privacy protections.

The Bill of Rights’ Fourth Amendment and the Michigan Constitution include protections against unreasonable searches and government officials seizing property without a warrant.

       State Senator Bill Runested says it should be made clear that right also covers electronic communications and information stored on computers and in databases. 


Tmthetom via Wikimedia | CC BY 2.0 /

Digital security has emerged as a serious concern for everyone from individuals to Fortune-500 companies.

“Cyber security is ever evolving and changing. There’s constant changes, and the environment is open for the hacker to be able to take.”

Chris Christensen is the director of the Michigan Office of Infrastructure Protection.

“So it’s important for anybody who’s trying to protect the network or protect their systems to be innovative and to be able to study the latest and greatest technologies.”

Hilary Farrell

A new law will help victims of domestic violence get out of shared cell phone plans with their accused abusers.

Prior to this law, victims did not have a way to cancel or change their cell phone plans unless they were the primary account holder.

Under the new law, victims who have a personal protection order would be able to get a court order from a judge to cancel or transfer their cell phone or data plan that they share with an accused abuser.

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The Michigan House has approved a resolution to amend the state constitution requiring law enforcement to obtain a search warrant before looking through electronic data or communications.

The House on Thursday passed the resolution 107-1 to include electronic communications under a section of the constitution protecting against unreasonable search and seizure.

It would still require passage by a two-thirds majority of the Senate as well as voter approval.

If the Senate OKs the measure, it could go before voters on the November ballot.

Rock1997 via Wikimedia | CC BY 2.0

A new Michigan law offers ways for certain people to access the online storehouse of memories in Facebook and Google accounts after the owner dies, but the bill sponsor says it wasn't easy to get tech companies and lawyers to agree on the new rules.

While mega tech corporations like Google and Facebook tout privacy concerns, lawyers representing families or loved ones fought to access electronic communications like emails and other digital assets.

A bipartisan group of state lawmakers hopes to send privacy protection legislation to Gov. Rick Snyder’s desk this year.

Michigan is one of 16 states that have seen privacy protection legislation introduced this month. That’s as it’s become clear political gridlock in Washington will prevent any national legislation from moving in 2016. 

State Rep. Jeremy Moss (D-Southfield) has introduced a bill that would make it harder for banks to sell customers’ personal information to third-party vendors.