Interesting Supreme Court Case

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Interesting Supreme Court Case

Post by Anaxagoras » Sun Jun 18, 2017 4:27 pm

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-c ... SKBN18W1RY

The basic question here is this: should the police need a warrant to ask your cell phone company for records of your phone data which shows your location.

Basically everyone who owns a mobile phone can be tracked by the phone company as long as the phone is turned on. If you don't want to be tracked, turn it off. As long as it is on, it has to communicate with a cell phone tower so that you can receive incoming calls or texts, and this shows your location. Not necessarily your precise location, but closer than you might think because they can probably triangulate it.

On the one hand, you could argue that this doesn't violate anyone's 4th amendment rights because this is the company's information, not your personal information.

On the other hand, in effect, it would mean that the government can track anybody they want (anybody with a cell phone, which is pretty much all of us) at any time without a warrant.
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Re: Interesting Supreme Court Case

Post by Abdul Alhazred » Sun Jun 18, 2017 4:29 pm

Here is the point: You do not need a cell phone.
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Re: Interesting Supreme Court Case

Post by ed » Sun Jun 18, 2017 4:37 pm

Unless the government mandates it
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Re: Interesting Supreme Court Case

Post by Anaxagoras » Sun Jun 18, 2017 4:47 pm

Abdul Alhazred wrote:Here is the point: You do not need a cell phone.
Maybe not, but don't you have one?
ed wrote:Unless the government mandates it
They don't have to mandate it if everyone has one anyway. According to statistics, 95% US adults have one. The 5% who don't are probably old people in nursing homes. I really don't think they would mandate it because they don't need to. And the smart criminals probably use burner phones anyway, like in The Wire.
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Re: Interesting Supreme Court Case

Post by Abdul Alhazred » Sun Jun 18, 2017 4:52 pm

Anaxagoras wrote:
Abdul Alhazred wrote:Here is the point: You do not need a cell phone.
Maybe not, but don't you have one?
Briefly had one while I was moving house.

Cancelled service once new phones were all hooked up correctly.
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Re: Interesting Supreme Court Case

Post by Grammatron » Sun Jun 18, 2017 4:57 pm

Abdul Alhazred wrote:Here is the point: You do not need a cell phone.
Nor a car, yet police still need a warrant.

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Re: Interesting Supreme Court Case

Post by Abdul Alhazred » Sun Jun 18, 2017 5:11 pm

Depending on where you live and what you do, you might need a car (or cell phone).

But the point about the cell phone is any individual with access to phone company records can track you in retrospect.

Ergo, no cell phone if you can possibly avoid it.

Do you trust the police, the phone company, and every single individual employee of the phone company?
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Re: Interesting Supreme Court Case

Post by Grammatron » Sun Jun 18, 2017 5:59 pm

Abdul Alhazred wrote:Depending on where you live and what you do, you might need a car (or cell phone).

But the point about the cell phone is any individual with access to phone company records can track you in retrospect.

Ergo, no cell phone if you can possibly avoid it.

Do you trust the police, the phone company, and every single individual employee of the phone company?
Not sure what your point is.

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Re: Interesting Supreme Court Case

Post by gnome » Sun Jun 18, 2017 6:40 pm

I think it should be handled like personal information held by any third party--it should require a warrant for the government to force that third party to give it up.

Aside from that, the third party must abide by the terms of whatever agreement was made that led them to possess your personal information.
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Re: Interesting Supreme Court Case

Post by Abdul Alhazred » Sun Jun 18, 2017 6:53 pm

gnome wrote:Aside from that, the third party must abide by the terms of whatever agreement was made that led them to possess your personal information.
Emphasis added.

How can you be sure that no employee is bribable or blackmailable?

Doesn't it make more sense to avoid having a cell phone at all, rather than relying on literally everybody being honest?
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Re: Interesting Supreme Court Case

Post by gnome » Sun Jun 18, 2017 6:54 pm

If it makes you feel better, sure. I thought we were discussing what the law should be.
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Re: Interesting Supreme Court Case

Post by Abdul Alhazred » Sun Jun 18, 2017 6:57 pm

gnome wrote:If it makes you feel better, sure. I thought we were discussing what the law should be.
The law should be the 4th amendment to the US constitution, but no one in power (that includes the Supreme Court) has the slightest intention of obeying it. Or having it obeyed. Or interpreting it other than with cynical disdain.

So you're on your own.
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Re: Interesting Supreme Court Case

Post by Abdul Alhazred » Sun Jun 18, 2017 6:59 pm

At least in the UK they don't try to humiliate you by pretending there is a written constitution.
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Re: Interesting Supreme Court Case

Post by Anaxagoras » Sun Jun 18, 2017 10:18 pm

gnome wrote:I think it should be handled like personal information held by any third party--it should require a warrant for the government to force that third party to give it up.
Apparently the standard practice of the phone company is that they are happy to give it up, even without a warrant. So in practice this position is equivalent to saying that they don't need a warrant.
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Re: Interesting Supreme Court Case

Post by Anaxagoras » Sun Jun 18, 2017 11:18 pm

Abdul Alhazred wrote:
gnome wrote:Aside from that, the third party must abide by the terms of whatever agreement was made that led them to possess your personal information.
Emphasis added.

How can you be sure that no employee is bribable or blackmailable?

Doesn't it make more sense to avoid having a cell phone at all, rather than relying on literally everybody being honest?
So that's why you don't have a cell phone? You do know though that you are now in a very small minority.

For me, it's not that I trust all those people per se. It's more that I think that they probably don't have a reason to target me in particular. I'm sure that for the vast majority of people, this never becomes an issue (beyond a hypothetical one).
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Re: Interesting Supreme Court Case

Post by sparks » Sun Jun 18, 2017 11:21 pm

If they want to know, they'll find out. Cell phones only make it easier for them.

Just don't do anything bad.



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Re: Interesting Supreme Court Case

Post by Anaxagoras » Mon Jun 25, 2018 7:03 am

The Supreme Court rules:

Supreme Court: Warrant generally needed to track cell phone location data

5-4 ruling. The 4 Liberals + Chief Justice John Roberts.
Washington (CNN)The Supreme Court on Friday said the government generally needs a warrant if it wants to track an individual's location through cell phone records over an extended period of time.
The ruling is a major victory for advocates of increased privacy rights who argued more protections were needed when it comes to the government obtaining information from a third party such as a cell phone company.
The 5-4 opinion in Carpenter v. United States, was written by conservative Chief Justice John Roberts siding with the four most liberal justices.
It's really not so hard for them to get a warrant though, I would imagine. But at least it means they can't just look at it willy-nilly, or start looking at cell phone records before they even have a suspect.
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Re: Interesting Supreme Court Case

Post by Abdul Alhazred » Mon Jun 25, 2018 9:25 am

It's something.
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Re: Interesting Supreme Court Case

Post by ed » Mon Jun 25, 2018 11:18 am

gnome wrote: it should require a warrant for the government to force that third party to give it up.
Yes, a warrant. Certainly. I am sure that that is uppermost in their minds.
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Re: Interesting Supreme Court Case

Post by gnome » Mon Jun 25, 2018 4:02 pm

Before we can hope to require certain behavior, the law needs to be clear. Compliance is a separate issue.
"If fighting is sure to result in victory, then you must fight! Sun Tzu said that, and I'd say he knows a little bit more about fighting than you do, pal, because he invented it, and then he perfected it so that no living man could best him in the ring of honor. Then, he used his fight money to buy two of every animal on earth, and then he herded them onto a boat, and then he beat the crap out of every single one. And from that day forward any time a bunch of animals are together in one place it's called a zoo! (Beat) Unless it's a farm!"
--Soldier, TF2