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Tag: fourth ammendment

Gizmodo: Justice Department Makes It Easier to Hack Computers

Maddie Stone
Gizmodo

Oh, good. A Department of Justice-proposed rule change that would make it way easier for FBI agents to obtain warrants to hack a computer from basically anywhere was just approved by a US Court committee.

Which is to say, we’re one step closer to having our digital privacy rights eviscerated in the name of federal investigations.

In the old world, federal search warrants are typically only valid within the issuing judge’s jurisdiction. Law enforcement officials needs to demonstrate probable cause, find the right jurisdiction to petition for a warrant, and notify the person they’re planning on searching. (That last bit is a cornerstone of our Fourth Amendment privacy rights.)

In rare cases, the Feds have gotten permission to legally conduct remote computer searches, outside of the issuing judge’s jurisdiction. To make it easier for the FBI to conduct these sorts of remote hacks and track down criminals who use anonymizing software, the DoJ would now like to expand that power.

Unfortunately, the latest bright idea for doing so amounts to a massive shit all over the Fourth Amendment. Not only would the rule change permit judges to authorize FBI agents to surveil and exfiltrate any suspect’s computer anywhere, the vague language of the rules might make it totally acceptable in certain cases to search our computers without ever telling us.

To read more click here.

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Judge: No Search Warrant Needed to Use Hidden Surveillance Cameras

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Police don’t need a search warrant to install hidden surveillance cameras to spy on suspects, a federal judge ruled Tuesday, CNET reports.

The case involved DEA agents installing multiple surveillance cameras without a warrant to uncover evidence of a marijuana growing operation.

The DEA didn’t violate the Fourth Amendment, which protects against unreasonable searches, because the hidden surveillance is a substitute for ordinary police surveillance, U.S. District Judge William Griesbach ruled, CNT reported.

In this case, the cameras were outside the home, which the judge said is not protected by the Fourth Amendment.

It’s unclear whether the case will make it to the Supreme Court, which has rejected warrantless GPS tracking and warrantless thermal imaging.