Does the government need a warrant to track a cell phone?

The Department of Justice (DOJ) is arguing the government does not a warrant to obtain location information of an individual from the service provider. The DOJ, arguing in front of the 3rd Circuit, is appealing an earlier ruling that held probable cause was needed before Sprint could be required to provide cell phone tracking information for authorities.

On the other side, attorneys are arguing that providing the cell phone tracking information allows authorities to pinpoint an individuals location and is equivalent to a seizure. They argued this violates Constitutional protections against unreasonable seizures without a warrant. 

The 3rd Circuit is the first federal court to consider the issue.

No Warrant Needed to Track User’s Cell Phone Location, DOJ Tells 3rd Cir. Panel | ABA Law Journal

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