Skip to comments.The Supreme Court Just Struck a Huge Blow Against the Government's Invasion of Your Privacy
Posted on 06/26/2014 8:14:09 AM PDT by Marie
The Supreme Court has handed down a unanimous decision in Riley v. California, and it's good news for digital privacy advocates.
The Court decided that once someone is arrested, the police may not search the person's phone without a warrant.
The ruling stated that "the term 'cell phone' is often misleading in shorthand; many of these devices are in fact miniature computers that also happen to have the capacity to be used as a telephone. They could just as easily be called cameras, video players, rolodexes, calendars, tape recorders, libraries, diaries, albums, televisions, maps, or newspapers."
Before just about every single person in America carried a cell phone, the courts permitted police officers to search "from incident to arrest" in "that area into which he might reach." The meant that in order to prevent any sort of destruction or damage to evidence, law enforcement could search the data, contacts, messages, videos, photos, or other apps, on a person's cellphone if it was gathered into evidence once the person was arrested.
Now, in the course of an arrest, if police want to look into a suspect's phone, they will need a warrant. The decision is huge in terms of protecting citizens's rights to privacy, and is a ringing endorsement of digital privacy.
(Twitter responses provided at the link)
This ends the practice of police confiscating cellphones when citizens are videotaping them. This ends the practice of flipping through a phone when a person is pulled over for speeding.
There's another one: Cops have been known to go through a person's phone after an accident to see if they were texting or talking on the phone right before. Now they'll have to get a warrant.
For better or for worse, this does a LOT to reaffirm the 4th Amendment.
Personally, I believe that the SC actually did something right here.
And yet, its such common sense that I’m almost sad when I read this ruling. Have we come this far that the police think its OK to simply take someone’s cell phone and start going through it to find numbers and pictures? Cell phones contain so much personal and private information these days. I know this is important, but I don’t view it as a “victory”.
Just in time for Lois’s blackberry.
The Police will just use their Warrant App ,D’oh
I am in federal law enforcement and I cringe when I hear stories about dumping cell phones because it is so obviously wrong. Definitely against my agency's policies.
Now we need the court to rule that the NSA must destroy any files collected and archived that contain information obtained without a warrant.
It’s a darn good start.
The cops can take the phone and hold it until the pro forma warrant is issued. Not much accomplished here of a practical nature.
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And it was 9-0 ruling.
Always password protect your phone. This prevents anyone from looking through your phone with just a casual effort and legally establishes the expectation of privacy.
So will the ICE I placed after my sons name be usable?
Average local cops do not know anything about the Constitution. Basically they say they interpret it and good luck in court.
Is it grandfathered?
So? This government is lawless, why would it matter?
I really believe that people just don't understand how bad it is with this guy in charge, or how much worse it is going to get in the near future. The American people have given a monster a loaded gun, and hope that he doesn't turn it on them. Too late.
I hope that applies to my iPad ... :-) ...