Specter pushes for stronger federal privacy laws

MaryClaire Dale
Associated Press
via Breitbart.com
3/29/2010

PHILADELPHIA (AP) – Broadening wiretap laws to include videotaped surveillance could either safeguard privacy or thwart efforts to recover stolen property, a U.S. senator was told Monday at a hearing not far from a school that’s being sued for trying to find missing laptops by activating their webcams.

Sen. Arlen Specter, a Democrat from Pennsylvania, said at a field hearing of a Senate subcommittee that he believes existing wiretap and video-voyeurism statutes do not adequately address concerns in an era marked by the widespread use of cell-phone, laptop and surveillance cameras.

Specter had said earlier that federal legislation might be needed to regulate the technology and said later Monday that testimony at the Philadelphia hearing had convinced him. Among those testifying, from a statement read into the record at the hearing, was Blake Robbins, the Harriton High School student who sued the Lower Merion School District.

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