29 Pages Posted: 12 Feb 2008 Last revised: 15 Dec 2008
The ubiquity of cell phones has transformed police investigations. Tracking a suspect's movements by following her phone is now a common but largely unnoticed surveillance technique. It is useful, no doubt, precisely because it is so revealing; it also raises significant privacy concerns. In this Note, I consider what the procedural requirements for cell phone tracking should be by examining the relevant statutory and constitutional law. Ultimately, the best standard is probable cause; only an ordinary warrant can satisfy the text of the statutes and the mandates of the Constitution.
Keywords: fourth amendment, search, seizure, cell phones, pen register, location tracking, surveillance
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation
Samuel, Ian J., Warrantless Location Tracking. New York University Law Review, Vol. 83, No. 4, October 2008. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1092293