“Ever since the US Supreme Court announced in mid-January that it agreed to hear two companion cases involving warrantless searches and seizures of cell phones, the privacy world has been abuzz,” Joe Silver reports for Ars Technica. “Yesterday, several prominent privacy groups filed briefs telling the court why it should stop cops from making easy, no-warrant phone searches.”
“Previously, courts have held that when officers place individuals under arrest, the police are permitted to search the suspects’ “persons and effects,” and the fruits of such searches are admissible evidence in courts,” Silver reports. “But modern cell phones enable access to a wealth of personal data, the large majority of which is likely unrelated to the government’s reason for arresting someone. This technological reality arguably results in the expansion of the intrusiveness of a routine search that would previously only reveal what someone is carrying on his or her physical person.”
“A number of advocacy organizations have felt the need to voice their opinions on what they see as the various ways that materials accessed from cloud-based cell phones with strong computing capacities potentially unsettle established Fourth Amendment precedent,” Silver reports. “Eleven briefs in support of petitioner Riley’s case have been filed to date, including by the American Library Association/Internet Archive, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, The American Civil Liberties Union, and the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC).”
Read more in the full article here.
MacDailyNews Note: United States Constitution, Amendment IV:
“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.“