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Did you see: “Franken wants ‘stalker’ app crackdown”

Sam Fettig, Communications Assistant

Al’s working hard on privacy issues in the Senate  — particularly, on the issue of so-called “stalking apps.” These applications can track a subject’s cell phone activity — emails, phone calls, text messages and location — if a perpetrator has access to the subject’s cell phone to download it. According to a National Network to End Domestic Violence survey, 72 percent of programs serving domestic violence and stalking victims in the U.S said their clients had reported being tracked using GPS devices.

Read more on how he continues to press the Department of Justice on this issue in The Hill:

Federal officials need to punish developers of “stalker” applications that track people without their knowledge, Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) said on Monday.

Franken, who has been a vocal critic of the apps, is renewing his push against the developers two weeks after the Justice Department made its first arrest of someone trying to sell a spyware app.

“Ending the proliferation and use of these apps is vital to protecting victims of stalking and domestic violence,” he wrote in a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder on Monday. Franken, the chairman of the Senate Judiciary subcommittee on privacy, has previously pushed Congress to enact new protections for data about people’s location.

“While Congress ultimately must enact such legislation to fully strengthen our federal efforts to protect Americans’ location privacy, there remains more that the [Justice Department] can do under current law to stop those that develop and market stalking apps,” he told Holder.

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