Supreme Court Rules on Internet Privacy - Access to cell phone data requires court warrants!

22 June 2018 Internet, IT & e-Discovery Blog Blog
Authors: Peter Vogel

The New York Times reported that the Supreme Court ruled in a “5-to-4 decision has implications for all kinds of personal information held by third parties, including email and text messages, internet searches, and bank and credit card records.”  The June 22, 2018 ruling in the case of  Carpenter v. US was reported in the June 22, 2018 NY Times article entitled “Supreme Court Rules that Warrants Generally Are Required to Collect Cellphone Data” and included these comments about the case:

The question for the justices was whether prosecutors violated the Fourth Amendment, which bars unreasonable searches, by collecting vast amounts of data from cellphone companies showing Mr. Carpenter’s movements.

In a pair of recent decisions, the Supreme Court expressed discomfort with allowing unlimited government access to digital data.

It limited the ability of the police to use GPS devices to track suspects’ movements, and it required a warrant to search cellphones.

My blog November 27, 2017 provides more background on the case “Will the Supreme Court rely on a 1979 case (think 18,134 Internet years) for Internet/cellphone privacy in 2017?

This is an import ruling since cell phone data privacy is very significant given that the Supreme Court stated that there…”are 396 million cell phone service accounts in the United States—for a Nation of 326 million people.”

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