by Jess Kamen, Politico Morning Tech, Oct 2, 2012
Courts and legislatures around the country are struggling with where to draw the line on government access to your electronic data. A federal appeals court in New Orleans [recently heard] oral arguments in a case involving the government’s ability to review location data from cellphone companies. To obtain the information, lower courts have ruled that the government needs a search warrant supported by probable cause. The government argues that the information is cellphone company business records, and cellphone users have given up some degree of privacy when they give up their location information.
California Gov. Jerry Brown vetoed a bill that would have required law enforcement to get a search warrant before obtaining any location information from any device. ‘It may be that legislative action is needed to keep the law current in our rapidly evolving electronic age,’ said the governor in his veto message, adding he was not ‘convinced’ the bill struck the right balance between the needs of law enforcement and individual privacy. http://tinyurl.com/8kx9s4x
- Gov. Brown vetoes requiring a warrant for cellphone location info (latimesblogs.latimes.com)
- Governor Brown Vetoes California Electronic Privacy Protection. Again. (eff.org)
- California Governor Vetoes Landmark Location-Privacy Law (wired.com)
- Cell phone location data not private, Feds argue (computerworld.co.nz)
Associated Press, Chicago Tribune, May 23, 2012
When Kentucky State Troopers stopped 49-year-old Robert Dale Lee on Interstate 75 in September 2011, they knew he would be coming their way and what to look for in his truck. The Drug Enforcement Administration had been following Lee’s truck from Chicago using a GPS — a tracking device placed on the vehicle as part of a multi-state drug probe — and troopers found 150 pounds of marijuana in the vehicle. Now, a federal judge has ruled the stash inadmissible in the case against Lee because the DEA and troopers didn’t have a warrant to place the device on the truck. …
For full text of the article, visit Federal judge: GPS use illegal in Chicago-Kentucky drug bust – chicagotribune.com.
By Jennifer Valentino-DeVries, Digits, Wall Street Journal, January 23, 2012
The Supreme Court ruled Monday that police violated the Fourth Amendment when they attached and used a GPS device to track a suspect’s vehicle without a warrant. … [But the Court’s decision] applies only to the placement and use of a GPS device that had to be attached to the suspect’s car. The justices said the device was an intrusion onto the suspect’s property, even if the car was being driven on public roads. The opinion doesn’t say anything about what would happen if the government were able to track the car through other electronic means, without ever touching the vehicle. …
For full text of the article, visit What Does the Supreme Court GPS Ruling Mean for Privacy? – Digits – WSJ.
- Supreme Court Ruled on GPS Tracking Case, Backs Privacy Rights (geodatapolicy.wordpress.com)
- Supreme Court Relies on Kerr’s Theory of Fourth Amendment and Property (geodatapolicy.wordpress.com)
Center for Democracy and Technology, November 8, 2011
1) Supreme Court to Decide Whether GPS Tracking Requires Warrant
On November 8, the U.S. Supreme Court is set to hear oral argument in the case of United States v. Jones, which raises the question of whether the government can, without a warrant, install a Global Positioning System (“GPS”) tracking device on a person’s motor vehicle to track the vehicle’s movements. If the Court decides that the installation or use of a GPS device to track a person is a “search” or “seizure” under the Constitution’s Fourth Amendment, then government agents would generally be required to obtain a warrant before using such a device. The Court’s decision could also shed some light on whether other forms of location tracking – such as monitoring the location of a mobile device such as a cellular telephone – trigger the warrant requirement of the Fourth Amendment. …
For full text of this great summary, visit Supreme Court To Decide Whether GPS Tracking Requires Warrant | Center for Democracy & Technology.
- Supreme Court To Decide Major GPS Tracking Case (geodatapolicy.wordpress.com)
- Supreme Court Considers GPS Tracking Case Today (geodatapolicy.wordpress.com)
- U.S. Supreme Court to decide police GPS tracking case (politicore.wordpress.com)
- Supreme Court Sees Shades of 1984 in Unchecked GPS Tracking (wired.com)