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Google Privacy Wireless Networking

Court Declares Google Must Face Wiretap Charges For Wi-Fi Snooping 214 214

New submitter Maser_24 writes with news about continued action against Google for snooping on unsecured Wi-Fi networks when collecting data for Street View. From the article: "A federal appeals court this week ruled that Google could be held liable for civil damages for the company's 2011 scandal involving the company's collection of Wi-Fi data from unsecured hotspots using their Street View vehicles. To come to that conclusion, the court followed a rather unique logic path; according to the court, unsecured Wi-Fi hotspots are not 'radio communications' that are 'readily accessible' to the general public and therefore Google violated the Wiretap Act." This despite being cleared of wrongdoing by the FCC.
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Court Declares Google Must Face Wiretap Charges For Wi-Fi Snooping

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  • by laing (303349) on Wednesday September 11, 2013 @11:07AM (#44819341)
    Analog cellular phone calls are covered by a separate law (The Electronic Communications Privacy Act of 1986). It not only makes it illegal to record them, it makes it illegal to sell a radio that can receive them (or be easily modified to receive them). Thankfully all mobile phones are digital now. Unfortunately that law is still on the books.
    Another court case conflicts with the Google ruling. Back when they were in popular use, the police sometimes recorded wireless phone calls from 46/49 MHz cordless phones (without a warrant). The police used these recordings in court to convict a drug dealer and the drug dealer argued that the communications were private. The courts ruled that they were not. Here [uscourts.gov] is the court ruling from this case:

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