Nevertheless, state lawmakers are starting to bolster privacy. Maine lawmakers passed last month a bill that would require a warrant for gathering location information from mobile phones. Enactment is pending while the Legislature looks for funding.
However, law enforcement has had success in arguing against such laws. A bill similar to Maine's died in the Montana Legislature in April and was vetoed last year by California Gov. Jerry Brown, who was concerned that it would hamper criminal investigations.
State and federal law enforcement often work under differing laws that apply to the same issue, and have learned to deal with the conflicts. "The idea that (the state law) is going to make (investigations) any harder is a cop out," Fakhoury said.
All of the above laws and bills apply only to criminal cases within the U.S. They have no impact on cases involving national security, such as recent revelations of the National Security Agency's wide-ranging surveillance of electronic communications.
Read more about data privacy in CSOonline's Data Privacy section.