The FBI is now demanding the right to read whatever information is on your smartphone, whenever it wants to do so, without a warrant and with impunity. They have demanded, by requesting a court order, that Google ‘provide law enforcement with any and all means of gaining access, including login and password information, password reset, and/or manufacturer default code (“PUK”), in order to obtain the complete contents of the memory of [their] cellular telephones.’
In this particular case, the FBI claims it would be using the unlock capability to read the smartphone data of an ex-convict who has “signed his rights away” — but, leaving aside the issue of whether anyone, even a convict, should ever lose his rights, once the FBI have this capability, does any sane person believe that they will not use it whenever they feel like it? Everyone’s rights are in danger when the government has such blanket surveillance powers. This is a direct and brazen violation of our constitutional right to be free of unlawful search and seizure.