With All Strength into Reforms of the Russian UAE Kind Cover Image

With All Strength into Reforms of the Russian UAE Kind
With All Strength into Reforms of the Russian UAE Kind

Author(s): Author Not Specified
Subject(s): Government/Political systems, International relations/trade
Published by: Centar za evroatlantske studije CEAS
Summary/Abstract: In a major victory for electronic privacy rights, the Supreme Court of the United States decided on June 25th, 2014 that a warrant is needed before police can search an arrested individual’s cellphone or other personal electronic device.In a unanimous decision supported by both the more liberal and conservative justices, the Court rejected arguments that searches of cellphones was similar to searches for other contraband during an arrest. Chief Justice John Roberts wrote in the sweeping opinion that because of the technological nature of modern cell phones, which with their massive capacities are able to contain millions of pages of texts, thousands of pictures, hundreds of videos, many private documents, a person’s historic location information, medical information, and a plethora of other information – all of which can date back to the purchase of the phone or even earlier – searches of cell phones pose a much more intense privacy risk than the simple search of someone’s person. Before the digital age, the opinion continued, police officers searching an arrestee and his/her belongings might have stumbled on only a few very personal items, as “people did not typically carry a cache of sensitive personal information with them as they went about their day,” while today “more than 90% of American adults who own a cell phone keep on their person a digital record of nearly every aspect of their lives – from the mundane to the intimate.” Thus, the privacy concerns of searching a cell phone are much greater than the search of a person, wallet, purse, and arguably, according to Justice Roberts, a home: “[a phone] contains a broad array of private information never found in a home in any form.”The need for a warrant was identified as possibly hurting law enforcement’s capability to fight crime, but the Court agreed that privacy concerns were more important. Regardless, windows for searching phones and other personal electronic devices without a warrant were left in cases such as those of ticking-time bombs or kidnappings where the child’s location could be on the phone.

  • Page Count: 7
  • Publication Year: 2014
  • Language: English