SB 179 - This act requires the Department of Public Safety to establish and operate the Missouri Child Protection Registry composed of a secure list of contact points belonging or accessible to minors. Under this act, contact points may include instant messaging identities, wireless telephones, pagers, facsimiles, or email addresses. Parents, guardians, schools, and other entities may add contact points to the registry by registering such contact points with the Department of Public Safety. The registration shall last for 3 years, and can be revoked or renewed upon notification to the Department. The Department shall take certain steps as set forth in this act to ensure the security of the registry.

This act bans any person from sending a message to a contact point that has been registered for 30 days or more if the primary purpose of the message is to advertise or otherwise link to a message that advertises gambling, intoxicating liquor, tobacco products, vapor products, controlled substances, or material pornographic for minors. Sending such a message is not prohibited if certain procedures are followed as set forth in this act. The Department of Public Safety is also required to establish a mechanism for senders of such messages to verify compliance with the registry. If a person desires to a send such a message, they shall pay the department a fee for access to the mechanism for verifying compliance at a rate of 7/10 of one cent for each time a contact is checked. Of the revenues generated, 85% shall be credited to the Child Protection Registry Fund created under this act, and at least 15% shall be allocated to the Attorney General to investigate, enforce, and defend this act.

A person found to violate this act shall be guilty of a Class A misdemeanor. A person authorized to have personal information belonging to a minor obtained through the registry who knowingly discloses such information is guilty of a Class A misdemeanor. Additionally, civil action may be brought by certain individuals as set forth in this act, who may recover either actual damages or the lesser of $5,000 for each message received by the recipient or transmitted or $250,000 for each day the violation occurs.

This act shall become effective on January 1, 2016.


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