What Are Smart Meters Telling Law Enforcement About You?

Your Right to Privacy

Consumers should have control of their own energy usage data and information.  Right now, electric utilities can track your electricity usage every 15 minutes using Smart Meter technology and can hand your information over to local police, ICE and other law enforcement agencies. This information can reveal your comings and goings, approximately how many people are in your household, and even what appliances you are using.

Test Your Knowledge!

Take a survey quiz about how Smart Meters affect your privacy:

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/smartmeterprivacy

Can Consumers Protect Themselves?

Utility companies divulge this usage data for thousands of Californians to private investigators, government agencies and law enforcement agencies every year.

Under most circumstances, the energy companies must give the customers seven (7) days notification before handing electricity usage data over to law enforcement agencies. Within those seven days, customers have an opportunity to protect their privacy by filing a motion to quash the warrant or court order, and telling your electric company to wait until the court has ruled on your motion.  You must move quickly!  If you receive a notice from your electric company, you only have seven days to act!

You Can Opt-Out!

Smart Meters have been rolling out all throughout California and continue to do so.  If you do not yet have a Smart Meter and you receive a notice from your electric company that it will install a Smart Meter at your location, you can tell your electric company that you do not want it.

If you already have a Smart Meter at your location, you can have it removed.  But it may cost you!  Electric companies generally charge customers a one-time charge to replace a Smart Meter with an analog meter, and a temporary recurring monthly charge for meter readings.  The costs may be reduced if you meet certain income requirements.

To opt-out of having a Smart Meter, visit:

SDG&E

https://webarchive.sdge.com/residential/smart-meter-opt-out/smart-meter-opt-out-program

PG&E

https://www.pge.com/en_US/residential/save-energy-money/analyze-your-usage/your-usage/view-and-share-your-data-with-smartmeter/smartmeter-updates/smart-meter-opt-out-program.page

SCE

https://www.sce.com/customer-service/my-account/smart-meters/opt-out

SoCal Gas

https://www.socalgas.com/save-money-and-energy/advanced-meter/opt-out-faq