Location Tracking

Police “Google Searches” Through Our Location History? No Thanks

Police “Google Searches” Through Our Location History? No Thanks

By Kade Crockford, Director, ACLU of Massachusetts Technology for Liberty Project at 3:24pm
Imagine a searchable database that would enable police or federal agents to instantly track everywhere you’ve ever driven in your car, like a “Google search” of your location over a period of months or even years. According to a law enforcement data manager speaking at a 2010 National Institute of Justice conference, that’s where the government is headed.

ACLU Sues FBI for New GPS Tracking Memos

By Adrienne Lucas, Legal Intern, Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 3:32pm

Today the ACLU filed a lawsuit under the Freedom of Information Act to force the FBI to release two memos guiding the bureau’s policy on GPS tracking. The memos were written in the wake of the Supreme Court’s January decision in U.S. v.…

ACLU Files Brief Opposing Warrantless GPS Searches

ACLU Files Brief Opposing Warrantless GPS Searches

By Andrew Crocker, ACLU Intern / Harvard Law School Class of 2013 at 11:09am

(Updated below)

In 2010, the FBI attached a GPS device to the car of a man named Fred Robinson and continuously monitored his whereabouts for nearly two months—all without getting a warrant. Now Robinson is on trial, and on Friday, the ACLU…

More Federal License Scanners Reported

More Federal License Scanners Reported

By Jay Stanley, Senior Policy Analyst, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 12:15pm

(Updated below)

LA Weekly has published an investigative report on the use of License Plate Scanners in Southern California. In addition to reporting that the rapid embrace of the technology by local law enforcement has led to “one of…

In Massachusetts,  A Registry of Everywhere You’ve Ever Driven?

In Massachusetts, A Registry of Everywhere You’ve Ever Driven?

By Kade Crockford, Director, ACLU of Massachusetts Technology for Liberty Project at 1:46pm

Back in the fall of 2010, I was perusing the Massachusetts state public safety website when I came upon an interesting notice. The state had received nearly a half a million dollars from the federal Department of Transportation for the purchase and…

Supreme Court Decision on GPS Tracking: A Spur to Action for Congress

Supreme Court Decision on GPS Tracking: A Spur to Action for Congress

By Chris Calabrese, Legislative Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 10:59am

It's time for Congress to catch up with new technology and support the GPS Act!

The House Hearing on Location Tracking Law (or the Lack Thereof)

The House Hearing on Location Tracking Law (or the Lack Thereof)

By Jay Stanley, Senior Policy Analyst, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 1:44pm

My colleague Catherine Crump testified before Congress today on location tracking and privacy, and the GPS Act that would increase legal protections for our location data. The hearing was before the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security and Investigations, and you can read her written testimony submitted here.

The chairman of the committee, Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner (D-Wis.), is a strong supporter of updating the law. He opened the hearing by acknowledging that the law has not kept pace with new technology—certainly a truism, and certainly true with regards to location tracking in particular, but one that is good to hear accepted as fact by powerful lawmakers.

Sensenbrenner also slammed the Justice Department for not sending a witness to the hearing. The reason, he reported, is that “it lacks a clear policy position on ECPA,” referring to the 1986 Electronic Communications Privacy Act. When Sensenbrenner was reading Catherine’s bio, which included mention of her efforts to find out how the DOJ is interpreting

Hurray for Google Transparency, Now Where is Everyone Else?

Hurray for Google Transparency, Now Where is Everyone Else?

By Chris Calabrese, Legislative Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 3:16pm

Google released its latest transparency report today. They’ve made some interesting additions and the overall number of government requests is on the rise. But before we get to that, there is one major overriding point: good for Google and where…

ACLU Asks Appeals Court to Require a Warrant for GPS Tracking

ACLU Asks Appeals Court to Require a Warrant for GPS Tracking

By Catherine Crump, Staff Attorney, ACLU Speech, Privacy and Technology Project at 1:33pm

Yesterday we asked the Third Circuit Court of Appeals to consider our argument that law enforcement agents should have to obtain a warrant based on probable cause to attach a GPS tracker to a car and track its movements (you can read our amicus brief…

Bad News On Warrantless GPS Tracking

Bad News On Warrantless GPS Tracking

By Catherine Crump, Staff Attorney, ACLU Speech, Privacy and Technology Project at 4:10pm

Today the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued a disappointing but fortunately narrow decision in a case involving warrantless tracking of a vehicle with a GPS device. The three-judge panel refused to exclude GPS tracking evidence under…

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