Re: Court Orders Gov't To Disclose GPS Tracking Data

IANAL(IJLW1)*, but I believe that current case law in the US says that
law enforcement may attach a tracking device to a target's vehicle and
collect coordinates without having a court order.  As I understand it
the logic is much the same as what you're saying: When the person is
out driving their car, they do not have an expectation of privacy.  In
order for data collection to technically be a "search" (and thus
require a warrant), there must be some expectation of privacy in the
data being collected.
This logic has been applied in some other technical domains with the
opposite decision, e.g., infrared imaging of houses:

It seems like a distinction arises here between an expectation of
privacy in a single observation (or a few observations) and an
expectation of privacy from sustained collection.  Someone can watch
me walk down the street, but if they follow me for days, things like
stalker laws start to apply.  I'm not sure whether this line of
argument has come up in legal circles, but it seems to at least be
sort of on the horizon with respect to infrared imaging:


* I Am Not A Lawyer (I Just Live With One)

On Thu, Sep 8, 2011 at 12:30 PM, Karl Dubost <> wrote:
> Le 8 sept. 2011 à 16:38, David Singer a écrit :
>> A.  We can place gps devices on people's cars and track them without a warrant because their cars are in public places and they have no expectation of privacy.
>> B.  We cannot release the records because that would violate their privacy.
> I wonder what is the law in different countries for stalking. You could follow someone, write down all venues this person is going to, even track yourself following the person.
> Is the issue about tracking (collecting the data) or sharing them?
> --
> Karl Dubost -
> Developer Relations & Tools, Opera Software

Received on Thursday, 8 September 2011 16:57:35 UTC