Surrender Your Sidearm, er, Mobile Device!
All rules are out the window when your economy is shot. At least, that's what California "law-makers"--wait, wait, I know it was a California Supreme Court ruling--must have been thinking when they decided your mobile device is now searchable!
The California Supreme Court ruled Monday that police can search the cell phone of a person who's been arrested -- including text messages -- without obtaining a warrant, and use that data as evidence.
The ruling opens up disturbing possibilities, such as broad, warrantless searches of e-mails, documents and contacts on smart phones, tablet computers, and perhaps even laptop computers, according to legal expert Mark Rasch.
Time to brush up on how to protect your privacy? The PATCtech blogger makes this point:
Password-protection of smart phones might be a useful tool to ward off a warrantless search -- it's not clear that an arrested suspect could be compelled to divulge his or her password to police -- but that legal argument has not yet been made.
All of the contents on a laptop can now be searched without wrongdoing or suspicion from U.S. Customs agents according to a recent federal appeals court ruling (PDF)...
The ruling also makes cellphones, MP3 players, digital cameras and other electronic equipment available for search at will by customs agents (Source: PCWorld, 2008)