Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of HB2954
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Full Text of HB2954  103rd General Assembly


Rep. Jennifer Gong-Gershowitz

Filed: 3/14/2023





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2    AMENDMENT NO. ______. Amend House Bill 2954 by replacing
3everything after the enacting clause with the following:
4    "Section 1. Short title. This Act may be cited as the Civil
5Liability for Doxing Act.
6    Section 5. Definitions. As used in this Act:
7    "Course of conduct" means a pattern of conduct composed of
82 or more acts, evidencing a continuity of purpose.
9    "Electronic communication" means any transfer of signs,
10signals, writing, images, sounds, data, or intelligence of any
11nature transmitted in whole or in part by a wire, radio,
12electromagnetic, photoelectronic, or photo-optical system.
13    "Emotional distress" means significant mental suffering,
14anxiety, or alarm. "Emotional distress" is limited to
15emotional suffering that is protracted and not merely trivial
16or transitory.



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1    "Family or household member" has the meaning given to the
2term "family or household members" in Section 103 of the
3Illinois Domestic Violence Act of 1986.
4    "Personally identifiable information" means any
5information that can be used to distinguish or trace a
6person's identity, such as name, prior legal name, alias,
7mother's maiden name, and date or place of birth in
8combination with any other information that is linked or
9linkable to a person such as:
10        (1) social security number, home address, phone
11    number, email address, social media accounts, or biometric
12    data;
13        (2) medical, financial, education, consumer, or
14    employment information, data, or records;
15        (3) any other sensitive or private information that is
16    linked or linkable to a specific identifiable person, such
17    as gender identity, sexual orientation, or any sexually
18    intimate visual depiction; or
19        (4) any information that provides access to a person's
20    teleconferencing, video-teleconferencing, or other
21    digital meeting room.
22    "Post" means to circulate, deliver, distribute,
23disseminate, transmit, or otherwise make available to 2 or
24more persons through electronic communication.
25    "Publish" means to circulate, deliver, distribute,
26disseminate, post, transmit, or otherwise make available to



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1another person. "Publish" does not include writing or
2electronically communicating to one other person in private
3communications for which an individual has a reasonable
4expectation of privacy.
5    "Regularly resides" means residing in the household with
6some permanency or regular frequency in the person's living
8    "Stalk" or "stalking" has the meaning provided in Section
912-7.3 of the Criminal Code of 2012, except that "stalking"
10does not include an activity that is part of a protest that is
11protected by the United States Constitution or the Illinois
13    "Substantial life disruption" means a material and
14significant alteration of an individual's livelihood.
15"Substantial life disruption" may include, but is not limited
16to, moving from an established residence, changing routes to
17and from work, changing employment or work schedule, or losing
18time at work or a job.
19    Section 10. Doxing.
20    (a) An individual engages in the act of doxing when that
21individual intentionally publishes another person's personally
22identifiable information without the consent of the person
23whose information is published and:
24        (1) the information is published with the intent that
25    it be used to harm or harass the person whose information



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1    is published and with knowledge or reckless disregard that
2    the person whose information is published would be
3    reasonably likely to suffer death, bodily injury, or
4    stalking; and
5        (2) the publishing of the information:
6            (i) causes the person whose information is
7        published to suffer significant economic injury or
8        emotional distress or to fear serious bodily injury or
9        death of the person or a family or household member of
10        the person; or
11            (ii) causes the person whose information is
12        published to suffer a substantial life disruption; and
13        (3) the person whose information is published is
14    identifiable from the published personally identifiable
15    information itself.
16    (b) It is not an offense under this Act for an individual
18        (1) provide another person's personally identifiable
19    information or sensitive personal information in
20    connection with the reporting of criminal activity to an
21    employee of a law enforcement agency or in connection with
22    any lawfully authorized investigative, protective, or
23    intelligence activity of any law enforcement agency or of
24    an intelligence agency of the United States and the person
25    making the report reasonably believes the alleged criminal
26    activity occurred or the existing investigative,



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1    protective, or intelligence activity is legitimate;
2        (2) disseminate the personally identifiable
3    information for the purpose of, or in connection with, the
4    reporting of conduct reasonably believed to be unlawful;
5    or
6        (3) provide a person's personally identifiable
7    information in connection with activity protected under
8    the United States Constitution or the Illinois
9    Constitution pertaining to speech, press, assembly,
10    protest, and petition, as well as the provision of
11    personally identifiable information to the press.
12    (c) Nothing in this Act shall be construed in any manner
14        (1) conflict with Section 230 of Title II of the
15    Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 230);
16        (2) conflict with 42 U.S.C. 1983; or
17        (3) prohibit any activity protected under the
18    Constitution of the United States or the Illinois
19    Constitution.
20    Section 15. Civil action.
21    (a) A person who is aggrieved by a violation of this Act
22may bring a civil action against (i) the individual who
23committed the offense of doxing or (ii) any individual or
24entity that directs one or more persons to violate this Act and
25that knowingly benefits, financially or by receiving anything



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1of value, from participation in a venture that the individual
2or entity knew involved a violation of this Act.
3    (b) A person who is aggrieved by a violation of this Act
4may recover damages and any other appropriate relief,
5including reasonable attorney's fees.
6    (c) An individual who is found liable under this Act shall
7be jointly and severally liable with each other individual, if
8any, who is found liable under this Act for damages arising
9from the same violation of this Act.
10    (d) When a judgment is entered in favor of an individual
11alleged to have committed the offense of doxing, the court may
12award reasonable costs and attorney's fees to the defendant
13for defending any claim that the court finds was brought by the
14plaintiff and that the court finds was frivolous, baseless, or
15brought in bad faith.
16    Section 20. Injunctive relief.
17    (a) A court in which a suit is brought under this Act, on
18the motion of a party, may issue a temporary restraining
19order, emergency order of protection, or preliminary or
20permanent injunction to restrain and prevent the disclosure or
21continued disclosure of a person's personally identifiable
22information or sensitive personal information. Upon a motion
23by a party in a civil action brought under this Act, and
24following a full evidentiary hearing, a court may issue an
25order pursuant to this Section to prevent the publishing of a



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1person's personally identifiable information or sensitive
2personal information if the court finds by clear and
3convincing evidence each of the following:
4        (1) the individual to be enjoined published personally
5    identifiable information or sensitive personal information
6    in violation of this Act;
7        (2) continued or further publishing of the personally
8    identifiable information or sensitive personal information
9    poses a present and ongoing risk of death, bodily injury,
10    or stalking to another individual; and
11        (3) the individual to be enjoined has no lawful or
12    constitutional purpose for continued or further publishing
13    of the personally identifiable information or sensitive
14    personal information.
15    (b) Any injunctive relief granted under this Section shall
16state the following with sufficient particularity to allow
17appellate review:
18        (1) the required findings in subsection (a) of Section
19    20 and the evidentiary basis and reasoning for the
20    findings;
21        (2) the expiration date of the injunction, which shall
22    be no more than one year from the date of its entry;
23        (3) that the enjoined individual may seek relief from
24    the injunction, if the court determines, after notice and
25    hearing, that one or more of the required findings in
26    subsection (a) of Section 20 no longer apply; and



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1        (4) that the person who sought the injunction may seek
2    an extension of the order of no more than one year if the
3    court determines, after notice and hearing, that the
4    required findings in subsection (a) of Section 20 continue
5    to apply.
6    (c) If a person violates any order issued under this
7Section, the court, in its discretion, may grant any civil
8remedy under State law.
9    Section 25. Venue. A civil action may be brought in any
10county in which an element of the offense occurred, or in which
11a person resides who is the subject of personally identifiable
12information published in violation of this Act.
13    Section 30. Constitutionality. The General Assembly does
14not intend this Act to allow, and this Act shall not allow,
15actions to be brought against constitutionally protected
17    Section 97. Severability. The provisions of this Act are
18severable under Section 1.31 of the Statute on Statutes.".