A new law in Rhode Island requires police to get a warrant before seeking location data collected by smartphones and other mobile devices.
Democratic Gov. Gina Raimondo ceremonially signed the bill into law earlier this week. She officially signed it last month.
Mapping data on cellphones can track a user's movements as the devices connect from one cell tower to another.
Providence Democratic Rep. Edith Ajello says the legislation she sponsored makes obtaining that data subject to the same legal standard as other personal information.
The law aims to curtail what's known as "tower dumps." That's when service providers give police cellphone information about everyone who was near a particular tower.
The law provides exceptions, such as an emergency call for help, when search warrants aren't needed.