Privacy SOS

Judge says government needs warrant for cell location data

In a decision handed down Monday in the Eastern District of New York, Judge Nicolas Garaufis sided with privacy rights advocates against the federal government's plea for warrantless access to the historical cell phone location data of a suspect in a law enforcement investigation.

The judge argued forcefully that rapid development and expansion of mobile technology does not give the government a green light to track people's movements without a judge's permission. 

The fiction that the vast majority of the American population consents to warrantless government access to the records of a significant share of their movements by 'choosing' to carry a cell phone must be rejected. In light of drastic developments in technology, the Fourth Amendment doctrine must evolve to preserve cell-phone user's reasonable expectation of privacy in cumulative cell-site-location records.

Read more at Ars Technica.

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