I was in Austin last week with Mike Rife of AustinPCTech and Thane Hayhurst of iTalent Consulting Group and we filed a lawsuit, with the help of the Institute for Justice (IJ), against the State of Texas for a law they recently passed requiring computer repair technicians to hold private investigator’s licenses for a lot of the computer work we do. I wrote about the law a month ago and will spare you the details here.
In short, the state of Texas passed a law that would computer repair technicians to have a private investigator’s license to perform many kinds of computer work. The license requires a criminal justice degree or a 3 year apprenticeship, and failure to comply carries a penalty of up to one year in prison and $14,000 in fines for both the repair tech and the customer. Requiring computer repair technicians to hold these licenses would put many smaller repair shops out of business.
With the help of IJ, Rife, Hayhurst, a PC repair customer, and I are suing the state of Texas to have the law repealed or have its scope restricted.
Here are some links to news and articles about this case on TV and around the web:
- The Institute for Justice’s original press release
- News 8 Austin with Video
- PostProcess, an E-Discovery and ESI issues blog
- CW33 Dallas News at Nine
- KVUE Austin with Video – get a load of yours truly standing in the back. Bigger video here.
If you find any other coverage of this on the web, please post it in the comments. I’d love to see it. As always, I’ll be updating this blog with news as it happens, so check back regularly, or subscribe to the RSS feed!
“Magnum PI? More like Magnum PC, get my lawyer on the phone!”
I propose a law for the Texas legislature to consider where anyone who wants to be a private investigator in Texas must have a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science from an accredited university. It seems only fair. And after all, one can’t have under-qualified PIs trying to do computer investigative work, now, can we?
I don’t know but this seems to violate the Texas Right To Work laws.
This is absurd.
With 3 stores and 19 years in business, this would cause a lot of our customers to be down for a vey long time and would put a lot of people out of work!! Are we trying to increase our unemployment rate in Texas?!?!? This is very, very wrong!! And I agree with a previous response that a PI, in order to work on a computer either needs to get a degree in computer science or work for a computer repair shop for 3 years.
I’m a Computer Forensics engineer and I find this law utterly ridiculous. This law’s objective must be to attempt to provide customer security. But more often than not, people who request computer repair service willingly give up their sytems to be worked on knowing that personal information might flash across the screen during the repair process.
I’ve been in the IT field for over 10 years now and have been in the Computer Forensics arena for over half of that time. In my time in the CF field, I’ve seen IT professionals create ridiculous mistakes in their media analysis. Granted we all are prone to make mistakes once in a while, but the questions I have are 1) How error prone will a Private Investigator when computer knowledge is not a requirement to conduct an analysis on electronic media? and 2) Does this attempt at protecting personal information justify decreasing the quality of service a client expects from a computer forensics examiner?
Now I guess we all COULD just get a PI license, but after reviewing the requirements online for an independent consultant, I think getting my CISSP and MCSE certifications were much easier.
Now I will say that I would support a move to require a Computer Forensics PI license that has requirements that are much more realistic. This CF PI license could be used to acquire and analyze electronic media and could be obtained by an individual rather than having to work under a PI licensed company for three years. Unfortunately, I don’t see that happening anytime soon.
Then again maybe this is a way for the younger, more tech-savvy generation to push the old PI’s out of the business 🙂
In the end it appears as if the state of Texas has decided to generate more income for the state by requiring professionals to obtain a license that does nothing to promote a higher quality of service to the public.
By the way, I’d love to know how the lawsuit against the state of Texas is developing.
Texas had better start building more prisons/jails, as all of us ‘Non Geeks” will be crashing our computers and need them fixed. I will take mine to the guy next door for repair (he is still in high school), hasn’t had time to get his PI certificate, so I guess we both will be going to jail.
Wow, this law is so broad that it would effect even journalists, air conditioner repairmen, search and rescue operators, etc, etc, etc. You can’t be paid to look into the identity, knowledge, or efficiency of a person? What? I hope the person who verifies your driver’s license at the PSB has a license to do that! As a PC repair tech, you wouldn’t even be able to do basic data recovery operations if the data is defined as “lost property”, it doesn’t say “lost physical property”.
Relevant section — license is needed for anyone who:
(1) engages in the business of obtaining or
furnishing, or accepts employment to obtain or furnish, information
(A) crime or wrongs done or threatened against a
state or the United States;
(B) the identity, habits, business, occupation,
knowledge, efficiency, loyalty, movement, location, affiliations,
associations, transactions, acts, reputation, or character of a
(C) the location, disposition, or recovery of
lost or stolen property; or
(D) the cause or responsibility for a fire,
libel, loss, accident, damage, or injury to a person or to property;
I don’t like how these laws get so dangerously near passage but then again who has time to keep up with all the red tape these bureaucratic politicians produce. They’ll never know what running a business is like. They’ve never cared about profit or sustaining growth, their only creation is misery for us overburdened taxpayers.
Dallas PC blog is a rendition of the latest happenings in the world of technology from computer repairs to laptop repairs, iPod repairs, data recovery and technology information and tech repair news. PC Virus … Adware and spyware is prevalent with some companies putting hard-to-remove cookies and tracking software on computers to report back data about what products and services people are looking for so those company can display the ads the way the want.
Dallas Computer Repair Service
Heya i’m for the first time here. I came across this board and I find It really useful & it helped me out much. I’m hoping to give something back and help others such as you helped me.
Hello, I recently broke my brand new laptop and I should get it fixed asap. I’m a beginner to the Phoenix area and located this company near by. I really wanted to find out if anyone had discovered them, here’s their info Computer Guru Consulting, 2942 N 24th St #114, Phoenix, AZ 85016, (602) 903-5666. Any help is going to be greatly appreciated, thanks!
excellent site, its cool!!!
You made some really good points there. I checked on the
internet for more info about the issue and found most people will go
along with your views on this web site.
Don´t consider every nice comment as spam, its not but here my two cents. It´s all about fitness mates! Or what do you think? I like this data and it has given me some sort of commitment to have success for some reason, so thanks. Furthermore I´m definitely considering writing these facts in my own blog!
I came lately to your website and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my initial comment. Retain writing, cause your posts are impressive! Doesnt it take up a lot of time to keep your blog so fascinating
You raised a good point. In America a lot of people here are so clueless about potential umbrella danger to others. When I dont have an umbrella with me and walking hear someone who does, Id expect him to mind my safety and if he doesnt, Ill raise my hand in front of my face and if I hit his umbrella, thats his problem. Thats my defensive move.
plumber Aspen Hill
Surprisingly very few items came up when I googled pool house/hotel with pool on Kor?ula, most of the result, was agencies offering the same units, so the selection was between a villa 10 km from Kor?ula town and a hotel in Lumbarda (4 km from Kor?ula town), when the internet marketers saw the pictures on the hotels homepage the decision was taken