New law will bolster privacy rights for kidnapping victims in New York

Survivors of kidnappings can apply for the state’s address confidentiality program under a law signed this week by Gov. Kathy Hochul.

The measure will expand the program to include more crime victims, including those who have survived kidnappings, with the goal of preventing their abusers from tracking them down.

Kidnapping survivors were among a handful of crime victims who were not included in the program, which is meant to strengthen privacy protections for people who have been abused or battered.

“Ensuring the privacy of kidnapping victims is integral to supporting their efforts to return their lives to normalcy following the trauma they have experienced,” said state Sen. Peter Harckham, who sponsored the measure with Assemblywoman Amy Paulin. “I am grateful to Assemblymember Paulin for partnering with me on this bill, and to Governor Hochul for her support as well. Safeguarding our residents who have endured a violent crime with confidentiality protections makes perfect sense in a world where gathering personal information and data is both pervasive and easy to accomplish.”

The law will allow survivors to keep their addresses out of public records and will take affect on Nov. 15.

“Giving kidnapping victims the ability to keep their addresses confidential is an important step in keeping victims secure and helping them reclaim a sense of peace and control over their lives,” Paulin said. “I’m pleased to have passed this legislation with State Senator Pete Harckham, whi