I just received this from the EFF and it's wonderful news. Warrants required to search 3rd party email providers (gmail, hotmail). Today is a good day :)
It's been a great week for electronic privacy and the 4th Amendment!
In a decision issued yesterday, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the government must have a search warrant before it can seize and search emails stored by third party email service providers. Closely tracking arguments made by EFF in our amicus brief, the court found that email users have the same reasonable expectation of privacy in their stored email as they do in their phone calls and postal mail.
And today, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals agreed with EFF and refused the government's request to reconsider an earlier pro-privacy decision, which held that federal magistrates have the discretion to require the government to get a search warrant based on probable cause before obtaining cell phone location records. That decision, based on EFF's briefing and oral argument as a friend of the court, has implications far beyond cell phone location privacy. It could apply to a broad range of communications records - including the content of your emails, your web search or browsing histories, as well as the location of your phone.
Thank you to our members who allow EFF to continue the fight for privacy. Please help us defend your rights by making a contribution today.
Thanks from your friends at EFF!