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Supreme court bans police access to phone records without a warrant

Friday - 22/06/2018 13:44
Court bars police from accessing call listings and location without a warrant, in ‘most consequential privacy ruling in a generation’
The justices weighed traditional privacy protections against the unprecedented volume of personal data generated by the use of cell phones and other mobile devices. Photograph: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg
The justices weighed traditional privacy protections against the unprecedented volume of personal data generated by the use of cell phones and other mobile devices. Photograph: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

US supreme court ruling issued Friday barred police from accessing cellphone records such as call listings and location data without first obtaining a search warrant, in a landmark decision in favor of privacy protections.

Advocates hailed the 5-4 ruling as a victory for personal privacy rights in an age when digital technology and the widespread use of mobile devices could create easy paths for law enforcement or other state bodies into the most intimate corners of private life.

“This is this most important fourth amendment ruling in recent memory, and plainly the most important decision of this term,” wrote Bob Loeb, a former leader of the justice department’s appellate division who has argued cases before the high court, on Twitter.

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