CRIMES AND PUNISHMENTS
18-6702. Interception and disclosure of wire, electronic or oral communications prohibited. (1) Except as otherwise specifically provided in this chapter, any person shall be guilty of a felony and is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for a term not to exceed five (5) years or by a fine not to exceed five thousand dollars ($5,000), or by both fine and imprisonment if that person:
(a) Willfully intercepts, endeavors to intercept, or procures any other person to intercept or endeavor to intercept any wire, electronic or oral communication; or
(b) Willfully uses, endeavors to use, or procures any other person to use or endeavor to use any electronic, mechanical, or other device to intercept any oral communication when:
1. Such device is affixed to, or otherwise transmits a signal through, a wire, cable, or other like connection used in wire communication; or
2. Such device transmits communications by radio or interferes with the transmission of such communication; or
(c) Willfully discloses, or endeavors to disclose, to any other person the contents of any wire, electronic or oral communication, knowing or having reason to know that the information was obtained through the interception of a wire, electronic or oral communication in violation of this subsection; or
(d) Willfully uses, or endeavors to use, the contents of any wire, electronic or oral communication, knowing or having reason to know that the information was obtained through the interception of a wire, electronic or oral communication in violation of this subsection; or
(e) Intentionally discloses or endeavors to disclose to any other person the contents of any wire, electronic or oral communication, intercepted by means authorized by subsection (2)(b), (c), (f) or (g) of this section or by section 18-6708, Idaho Code, if that person:
(i) Knows or has reason to know that the information was obtained through the interception of such communication in connection with a criminal investigation; and
(ii) Has obtained or received the information in connection with a criminal investigation with the intent to improperly obstruct, impede or interfere with a duly authorized criminal investigation.
(2) (a) It is lawful under this chapter for an operator of a switchboard, or an officer, employee, or agent of a provider of wire or electronic communication service whose facilities are used in the transmission of a wire or electronic communication to intercept, disclose, or use that communication in the normal course of his employment while engaged in any activity which is a necessary incident to the rendition of his service or to the protection of the rights or property of the provider of that service, except that a provider of wire communication service to the public shall not utilize service observing or random monitoring except for mechanical or service quality control checks.
(b) It is lawful under this chapter for an officer, employee, or agent of the federal communications commission, in the normal course of his employment and in discharge of the monitoring responsibilities exercised by the commission in the enforcement of 47 U.S.C. ch. 5, to intercept a wire, electronic or oral communication transmitted by radio or to disclose or use the information thereby obtained.
(c) It is lawful under this chapter for a law enforcement officer or a person acting under the direction of a law enforcement officer to intercept a wire, electronic or oral communication when such person is a party to the communication or one (1) of the parties to the communication has given prior consent to such interception.
(d) It is lawful under this chapter for a person to intercept a wire, electronic or oral communication when one (1) of the parties to the communication has given prior consent to such interception.
(e) It is unlawful to intercept any communication for the purpose of committing any criminal act.
(f) It is lawful under this chapter for an employee of a telephone company to intercept a wire communication for the sole purpose of tracing the origin of such communication when the interception is requested by an appropriate law enforcement agency or the recipient of the communication and the recipient alleges that the communication is obscene, harassing, or threatening in nature.
(g) It is lawful under this chapter for an employee of a law enforcement agency, fire department or ambulance service, while acting in the scope of his employment, and while a party to the communication, to intercept and record incoming wire or electronic communications.
(h) It shall not be unlawful under this chapter for any person:
(i) To intercept or access an electronic communication made through an electronic communication system that is configured so that such electronic communication is readily accessible to the general public;
(ii) To intercept any radio communication that is transmitted:
(A) By any station for the use of the general public, or that relates to ships, aircraft, vehicles or persons in distress;
(B) By any governmental, law enforcement, civil defense, private land mobile or public safety communications system, including police and fire, readily accessible to the public;
(C) By a station operating on an authorized frequency within the bands allocated to the amateur, citizens band or general mobile radio services; or
(D) By any marine or aeronautical communication system;
(iii) To engage in any conduct that:
(A) Is prohibited by 47 U.S.C. section 553 (federal communications act of 1934); or
(B) Is excepted from the application of 47 U.S.C. section 605 (federal communications act of 1934);
(iv) To intercept any wire or electronic communication, the transmission of which is causing harmful interference to any lawfully operating station or consumer electronic equipment to the extent it is necessary to identify the source of such interference; or
(v) For other users of the same frequency to intercept any radio communication, if such communication is not scrambled or encrypted, made through a system that utilizes frequencies monitored by individuals engaged in the provision or the use of such system.
(i) It shall be lawful under this chapter for a provider of electronic communication service to record the fact that a wire or electronic communication was initiated or completed in order to protect such provider, another provider furnishing service toward the completion of the wire or electronic communication or a user of that service from the fraudulent, unlawful or abusive use of such service.
(3) (a) Except as provided in subsection (3)(b) of this section, a person or entity providing an electronic communication service to the public shall not intentionally divulge the contents of any communication other than to such person or entity or an agent thereof while in transmission on that service, to any person or entity other than an addressee or intended recipient of such communication or an agent of such addressee or intended recipient.
(b) A person or entity providing electronic communication service to the public may divulge the contents of any such communication:
(i) As otherwise authorized in section 18-6707, Idaho Code, or subsection (2)(a) of this section;
(ii) With the lawful consent of the originator or any addressee or intended recipient of such communication;
(iii) To a person employed or authorized, or whose facilities are used, to forward such communication to its destination; or
(iv) If such contents were inadvertently obtained by the service provider and appear to pertain to the commission of a crime, if such divulgence is made to a law enforcement agency.
[18-6702, added 1980, ch. 326, sec. 2, p. 834; am. 2002, ch. 223, sec. 2, p. 634; am. 2004, ch. 303, sec. 1, p. 849.]