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H.R. 4886 (114th): Closing the Pre-Paid Mobile Device Security Gap Act of 2016

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About the bill

With the Apple-vs.-FBI encryption fight consuming so much attention over the past month, often lost by the wayside is an issue no less important: burner phones. The cheap disposable devices, also called “pre-paid phones,” are often bought anonymously and without registration. It was burner phones, not encryption, that were primarily used to plot the coordinated terrorist attacks in Paris last November which killed 130 people.

H.R. 4886, the “Closing the Pre-Paid Mobile Device Security Gap Act,” would ban anonymous pre-paid phones in the United States Introduced last week by Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA14), the bill would require purchasers of these devices to provide identification showing name, address, and date of birth. Speier has noted that this same info is required when purchasing a traditional contract-based cell phone. …

Sponsor and status

Jackie Speier

Sponsor. Representative for California's 14th congressional district. Democrat.

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Last Updated: Mar 23, 2016
Length: 9 pages
Mar 23, 2016
114th Congress (2015–2017)
Died in a previous Congress

This bill was introduced on March 23, 2016, in a previous session of Congress, but it did not receive a vote.

Although this bill was not enacted, its provisions could have become law by being included in another bill. It is common for legislative text to be introduced concurrently in multiple bills (called companion bills), re-introduced in subsequent sessions of Congress in new bills, or added to larger bills (sometimes called omnibus bills).



Mar 23, 2016

Bills and resolutions are referred to committees which debate the bill before possibly sending it on to the whole chamber.

H.R. 4886 (114th) was a bill in the United States Congress.

A bill must be passed by both the House and Senate in identical form and then be signed by the President to become law.

Bills numbers restart every two years. That means there are other bills with the number H.R. 4886. This is the one from the 114th Congress.

This bill was introduced in the 114th Congress, which met from Jan 6, 2015 to Jan 3, 2017. Legislation not passed by the end of a Congress is cleared from the books.

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“H.R. 4886 — 114th Congress: Closing the Pre-Paid Mobile Device Security Gap Act of 2016.” 2016. April 2, 2023 <>

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