Cops Now Have Device to Download Smartphone Data at Traffic Stops or Accidents

Cops Now Have Device to Download Smartphone Data at Traffic Stops or Accidents

Police soon will have a new tool to use in their crackdown on texting or using a cellphone while driving. The device enables them to review smartphone data at the scene of a traffic stop or accident to determine if the phone distracted the driver.

Legislation is needed to permit such an invasion of privacy, which has privacy advocates very concerned about the latest potential intrusion by the government.

The proposed law would basically create a situation in which the government would access private information without the benefit of a search warrant. If police come to your home to access your computer or cellphone, they must have a warrant. So, why should your car be treated differently? There are constitutional safeguards in place that must be addressed.

Find out how the device works, which states are considering allowing its use by law enforcement, and how privacy advocates are responding. The story unfolds on the next page.

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