New State Laws Take Aim At Tech-Based Crime

Texas lawmakers targeted front porch package theft, unsolicited sexting, telemarketer fraud and gas station credit card skimming.

By Shelly BrisbinSeptember 5, 2019 2:49 pm, ,

On Sunday, some 800 laws passed during the 2019 Texas legislative session went into effect. Among them are several that grapple with the way technology affects our daily lives. This year’s new laws address front porch package theft, unsolicited sexual images sent via text, the use of “deep fakes” to influence elections and telemarketer fraud.

Tech expert Omar Gallaga says consumers and companies that deliver packages have a stake in a new law that aims to deal with organized porch thievery.

“Amazon loses literally billions of dollars due to package misdirection or theft and there’s this phenomenon people call ‘porch pirates,’” Gallaga says. “They have expanded the punishments for that. Especially if you’re targeting the elderly or the disabled… there’s a range of punishments now from misdemeanor to felony.”

What you’ll hear in this segment:

– Whether a new sexting law is likely to be enforceable

– How a new law addresses election-related video fakery

– What new protections consumers have in cases of phone number spoofing


Written by Antonio Cueto.