Atlanta, GA asked in Communications Law and Internet Law for Georgia

Q: Is it legal in state of Georgia to use any device to gain access intrusion without permission to someone's cellphone

Is cellphone mirroring/hacking or use any device to download files from a person cellphone or computing device illegal in Georgia. Is using any device legal to monitor another phone calls and texts with intent to gossip or slander or cause harm to an individual

1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Consumer Law Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: In the state of Georgia, it is illegal to access someone's cellphone or computing device without their permission. This act is considered a form of computer trespass and invasion of privacy.

According to the Official Code of Georgia Annotated (O.C.G.A.) § 16-9-93(a), "Computer theft, computer trespass, computer invasion of privacy, and computer forgery":

"Any person who uses a computer or computer network with knowledge that such use is without authority and with the intention of:

(1) Taking or appropriating any property of another, whether or not with the intention of depriving the owner of possession;

(2) Obtaining property by any deceitful means or artful practice; or

(3) Converting property to such person's use in violation of an agreement or other known legal obligation to make a specified application or disposition of such property shall be guilty of the crime of computer theft."

Additionally, O.C.G.A. § 16-11-62 prohibits eavesdropping, surveillance, or intercepting communication that invades the privacy of another. This includes using devices to monitor phone calls and text messages without the consent of at least one party involved in the communication.

Using information obtained through illegal means to gossip, slander, or cause harm to an individual may also lead to additional charges, such as defamation or harassment.

In summary, using any device to gain unauthorized access to someone's cellphone or computing device, as well as monitoring their calls and texts without consent, is illegal in the state of Georgia.

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