Saturday, June 28, 2014

What to do if the police try to search your phone

Via the Electronic Frontier Foundation and the ACLU, some good advice:
The absolute best way to protect your phone from police inspection is to keep it locked with a passcode, which will keep an officer from rummaging through your Facebook photos as you stand beside him in handcuffs.

“The most simple precaution you can take is to make sure your phone is locked and/or encrypted,” says Jay Stanley, senior policy analyst for the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). “The police may take your phone, may try to look at it unconstitutionally, but they won't be able to.”
This is good security practice anyway.  But the "interesting" bit comes after Officer Friendly decides he's going to look anyway.  Lots of good info about how to handle this at the link.

1 comment:

Murphy's Law said...

Kind of a dumb article, actually. It's not as if police officers take people's phones on routine traffic stops OR flip through them in the owner's presence. Usually it comes after someone has been arrested, typically for a drug crime or weapons offense, and the officer checks the phone pics to see if there are photos of the defendant with drugs or guns. It's really not all that common OR a big deal. Just put a passcode on your phone like anyone should have anyway and call it a day. Understand that if you get arrested for a drug or gun crime and the officer can write a good affidavit spelling out probable cause, a warrant will be likely by issued and the phone searched regardless of consent or passcodes.