Court Strikes Down Warrantless GPS Tracking
The court unanimously ruled that police officers who attached a GPS tracking device to a car without a warrant acted unconstitutionally. The case may set precedent for digital privacy.
What's the Latest Development?
In a unanimous decision that may set precedent for future digital privacy cases, the Supreme Court has ruled that police officers who attached a GPS tracking device to car without a warrant acted unconstitutionally. Originally, police officers had obtained a warrant for the tracking device, but placed it on the car after the document had expired. The defendant had been sentenced to a life in prison after police tracked him to a house containing $850,000 in cash, 97 kilograms of cocaine, and 1 kilogram of cocaine base.
What's the Big Idea?
While the decision was unanimous, three different justifications were given. The writer of the majority opinion and the court's most conservative member, Antonin Scalia, said placing the GPS device amounted to a physical search, leaving aside the question of the warrant. This leaves open the possibility of warrantless searchers of cellphone data, for example, which can be accessed remotely. President Obama's appointee, Justice Sotomayor, challenged that assumption saying current 4th Amendment law is ill-suited to the digital age.
Photo credit: shutterstock.com
Many governments do not report, or misreport, the numbers of refugees who enter their country.
Controversial map names CEOs of 100 companies producing 71 percent of the world's greenhouse gas emissions.
- Just 100 companies produce 71 percent of the world's greenhouse gases.
- This map lists their names and locations, and their CEOs.
- The climate crisis may be too complex for these 100 people to solve, but naming and shaming them is a good start.
Bernie Sanders reveals an even bigger plan than Elizabeth Warren, but does it go too far?
- Bernie Sanders has released a plan to forgive all the student debt in the country.
- It is even larger than the plan Elizabeth Warren put forward two months ago.
- The plan has drawn criticism for forgiving the debt of both the poor and those well off enough to pay their own debt.
SMARTER FASTER trademarks owned by The Big Think, Inc. All rights reserved.