The U.S. Supreme Court has said that law enforcement must first seek a warrant before obtaining historical cell phone location records from phone companies, upending a near-decade long practice by police.
The court ruled 5-4 on the case, in what became one of the most awaited privacy legal decisions in the US this year.
The so-called “Carpenter” case had centered on the eponymous Timothy Carpenter, a criminal who was caught thanks to cell phone records in 2011. Law enforcement had obtained his location data from a phone provider without a search warrant, arguing the provider already had his data and Carpenter had no “reasonable expectation of privacy.”
But the court found the government’s warrantless access to cell-site records over a period of time “contravenes that expectation” of privacy, said Roberts.
Details may be found in an article by Zack Whittaker in the ZDNet web site at: https://zd.net/2K8IYvp.