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1540 Updates

Lawmakers look to ban GPS tracking of cars without consent

The Rhode Island Senate has passed a bill that would make it a crime to electronically track a vehicle without the owner's consent.

The Senate passed it unanimously on Wednesday.

Sen. Maryellen Goodwin, the Providence Democrat who sponsored the bill, says it's aimed at protecting stalking and domestic violence victims.

She says people can too easily be tracked using smartphones hidden in their cars. At least 11 states have laws against secretly installing GPS devices in vehicles.

The House passed a companion bill last month sponsored by Democratic House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello. Both chambers must now pass the other's bill before the legislation is sent to Democratic Gov. Gina Raimondo.

The bill exempts parents monitoring the whereabouts and driving habits of their children and businesses tracking employees at work.



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