Latest in California

Image credit:

California court says cops need warrants to get phone location data

50 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share
Save

Sponsored Links

A number of states already have laws preventing the police from snooping on your phone's location history without a warrant, but they just got another big boost from a court ruling. A California-based federal judge has determined that cops need those warrants because you have a reasonable expectation that your position data will remain private, even if it's vague info like the whereabouts of cell towers you've used. Cellphones can follow you anywhere and transmit a lot of information, the judge says. That location data may reveal much more about your life than you'd willingly share, especially at home and other private places where you have plenty of constitutional protections.

This isn't the first ruling of the sort and isn't legally binding, so there's no guarantees that officers across the US will ask nicely before trying to find out where you've been. However, it could have the police thinking twice about playing fast and loose with surveillance technology. They may not be so quick to track your phone if they know that they risk losing their case.

All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Comment
Comments
Share
50 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share
Save

Popular on Engadget

The 2019 Engadget Holiday Gift Guide

The 2019 Engadget Holiday Gift Guide

View
States sue to prevent EPA from revoking state emissions powers

States sue to prevent EPA from revoking state emissions powers

View
Recommended Reading: The 15th anniversary of 'Halo 2'

Recommended Reading: The 15th anniversary of 'Halo 2'

View
The Morning After: iFixit looks inside the 16-inch MacBook Pro

The Morning After: iFixit looks inside the 16-inch MacBook Pro

View
Netflix tweaks 'Devil Next Door' documentary after Polish PM complains

Netflix tweaks 'Devil Next Door' documentary after Polish PM complains

View

From around the web

Page 1Page 1ear iconeye iconFill 23text filevr