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Supreme Court Makes Sweeping Endorsement Of Digital Privacy

June 25, 2014

By huffingtonpost – excerpt

Police officers must get a warrant before searching the contents of a cell phone seized during an arrest, the Supreme Court ruled on Wednesday, an opinion that amounts to a sweeping endorsement of digital privacy.

“Modern cell phones are not just another technological convenience. With all they contain and all they may reveal, they hold for many Americans ‘the privacies of life,'” Chief Justice John Roberts wrote in the opinion.

“The fact that technology now allows an individual to carry such information in his hand does not make the information any less worthy of the protection for which the Founders fought. Our answer to the question of what police must do before searching a cell phone seized incident to an arrest is accordingly simple — get a warrant.”

Roberts shot down the Obama administration’s argument that searching a cell phone is “materially indistinguishable” from physical searches.

“That is like saying a ride on horseback is materially indistinguishable from a flight to the moon,” he said.

The court ruled that cell phones today are more like “minicomputers that also happen to have the capacity to be used as a telephone” and that their increased storage capacity has “several interrelated consequences for privacy.” Phones can include many distinct types of information — such as addresses, notes, prescriptions, bank statements, videos — that can reveal “much more in combination” than any one type…

Read the opinion in Riley v. California… (more)

Good news for privacy advocates

One Comment leave one →
  1. holeshothunter permalink
    June 25, 2014 4:23 pm

    The obama administration’s ideas of what is and must remain private puts him just above the shrub that initiated all of the “illegal laws”. They both qualify as very bad presidents. One should not be elected again…


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