4th Amendment applies to email!

So says the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals.

Today, the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit ruled that the contents of the messages in an email inbox hosted on a provider’s servers are protected by the Fourth Amendment, even though the messages are accessible to an email provider. As the court puts it, “[t]he government may not compel a commercial ISP to turn over the contents of a subscriber’s emails without first obtaining a warrant based on probable cause.”

I don’t think I can adequately express what a big deal this is.

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2 Responses to 4th Amendment applies to email!

  1. Kristopher says:

    Won’t stop packet sniffing.

    Remember folks, email = shouting in public.

    Compelling ISPs to give up email is about the police being technically incompetent, and having the ISP do the work for them.

  2. Tracie says:

    It’s kinda like the shield law for journalists. I don’t have to hand over my notes from a source…etc.

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