S-0995.1/91       _______________________________________________


                                 SENATE BILL 5336



State of Washington              52nd Legislature             1991 Regular Session


By Senator Thorsness.


Read first time January 29, 1991.  Referred to Committee on Energy & Utilities.Allowing the use of caller identification technology.

     AN ACT Relating to authorizing the utilities and transportation commission to permit the use of certain telecommunications services with appropriate privacy protection; adding a new section to chapter 80.36 RCW; and creating a new section.




     NEW SECTION.  Sec. 1.      The legislature finds that:

     (1) Telephone subscribers have a statutory and constitutional right to privacy in this state;

     (2) Technological advances have made it possible for telecommunications companies to provide services that allow public display of the caller's name and number, or other identifying information; and

     (3) It is desirable to make available to citizens of this state such technological features in a manner that permits citizens to exercise their right to privacy, which includes the ability to limit the dissemination of their telephone number to persons of their choosing.


     NEW SECTION.  Sec. 2.  A new section is added to chapter 80.36 RCW to read as follows:

     (1) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the commission may authorize a telecommunications company to provide services that automatically display the caller's name and telephone number or other identifying information only if the telecommunications company permits a caller, free of charge, to withhold or "block" the display of such identification of the caller, on an individual call basis, on the telephone or any connected instrument of the individual receiving the call.

     (2) The commission may, where the privacy interests of the person or entity may not otherwise be reasonably protected and where the public interest is best served, require a telecommunications company to permit a caller to block the display of the caller's identification for all out-going calls made on that line.  The commission shall adopt rules setting forth the criteria and procedures for requiring a company to provide this protection.

     (3) The commission shall direct every telecommunications company to notify its subscribers that their name and telephone number may be disclosed to a called party no later than sixty days before the company commences to offer or participate in the offering of a caller identification service.  The notice shall include a clear and complete description of the information that may be disclosed to the called party, as well as information on the availability of call blocking and line blocking.

     (4) This section shall not apply to (a) any caller identification service that is used within the same limited system, including but not limited to a centrex or private branch exchange (PBX), as the telephone of the called party; (b) a caller identification service that is used on a public agency's emergency telephone line or on the line that receives the primary emergency telephone number (9-1-1 or enhanced 9-1-1); (c) any caller identification service provided in connection with legally permissible call tracing or line-tapping procedures that are otherwise authorized by law; and (d) any caller identification service provided in connection with any "800" or "900" access code, but only until (i) the telecommunications company offering such a service is determined by the commission to have the technical capability to comply with subsections (1) and (2) of this section, or (ii) two years after the effective date of this act, whichever shall occur first.