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H.R. 4048: Automatic Listening Exploitation Act of 2019

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About the bill

Amid reports of smart home devices recording couples having sex, what recourse should consumers have under federal law for such privacy violations?


Recent years have seen an explosion of “smart” or voice-activated home devices, most prominently the Amazon Echo and Google Nest. 21% of adults now own such a device. The rate of ownership is still surging, with 14 million people getting their first such device last year.

However, reports have detailed devices going rogue and occasionally recording audio of what users say or do without their permission or knowledge. For example, an Amazon Echo device accidentally recorded a couple’s private in-home conversations and sent the audio to random people in the owner’s contact list.

What the bill does

The Automatic Listening Exploitation Act would fine a ...

Sponsor and status

Seth Moulton

Sponsor. Representative for Massachusetts's 6th congressional district. Democrat.

Read Text »
Last Updated: Jul 25, 2019
Length: 9 pages
Jul 25, 2019
116th Congress (2019–2021)

Introduced on Jul 25, 2019

This bill is in the first stage of the legislative process. It was introduced into Congress on July 25, 2019. It will typically be considered by committee next before it is possibly sent on to the House or Senate as a whole.

3% chance of being enacted according to Skopos Labs (details)


Jul 25, 2019

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

If this bill has further action, the following steps may occur next:
Passed Committee

Passed House

Passed Senate

Signed by the President

H.R. 4048 is 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. 4048. This is the one from the 116th Congress.

How to cite this information.

We recommend the following MLA-formatted citation when using the information you see here in academic work:

“H.R. 4048 — 116th Congress: Automatic Listening Exploitation Act of 2019.” 2019. October 28, 2020 <>

Where is this information from?

GovTrack automatically collects legislative information from a variety of governmental and non-governmental sources. This page is sourced primarily from, the official portal of the United States Congress. is generally updated one day after events occur, and so legislative activity shown here may be one day behind. Data via the congress project.