Americans Must Share Passcodes With Police

passcodes phone pin
Passcodes must now be shared with police.

Phone passcodes won’t protect you from the law.

A new ruling over passcodes, has been handed down in Florida. The court has ruled that you must now hand over phone passcodes. This means the protection of self incrimination, covered by the 5th amendment, is now undergoing some serious implications.

The 5th amendment in the US protects it’s citizens from forced self incrimination. For reference, back in November 2014, In Virginia, a court case was heard where the accused had video evidence stored on his phone but because the device was protected by a passcode, he was protected by the 5th amendment and was not ordered to reveal the phones passcode.

It’s worth mentioning though that using biometrics to secure the device, would of meant he had to provide his fingerprints. It’s regarded in the same way as providing a DNA sample is.

This new ruling though, means you must hand over your passwords for mobile devices, if and when the police ask for it.

We saw similar events take place during the FBI and Apple encryption debate and now the inconsistencies with the meaning of the 5th amendment, which have arisen because of this ruling.

The courts ruling means though, that the 5th amendment doesn’t protect you from handing over passcodes, in Florida anyway.

While all very confusing, it can sometimes be a difficult decision. Especially when it comes to privacy in today’s digital world.

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