Smart Fridges Head From Kitchen To Courtroom

April 04, 2014

Fenwick privacy and information security co-chair Tyler Newby talked with Law360 about privacy concerns related to the Internet of Things (IoT).

Everyday devices like refrigerators that are now quietly and routinely collecting data about their users may soon play a new evidentiary role in court. “In a lot of criminal investigations, placing a suspect or target of an investigation at a place of a crime or being able to determine that suspects' movements is often of interest to investigators,” said Newby, a former federal prosecutor.

The legality of using such data is an area where the case law is just beginning to evolve. While the U.S. Supreme Court touched on the Fourth Amendment issues in U.S. v. Jones, ruling that police could not track a suspect through a GPS device attached to his car without a warrant, courts are divided on the standards for obtaining other electronic data that can reveal personal facts.

“That's still very much the issue of the day,” said Newby, whose practice focuses on privacy and complex litigation matters for technology companies.

The full article is available through the Law360 website (subscription required).