No Warrant Required in U.S. for GPS Tracking.
At least, according to a U.S. District Court ruling:
As the law currently stands, the court said police can mount GPS on cars to track people without violating their constitutional rights — even if the drivers aren’t suspects.
Officers do not need to get warrants beforehand because GPS tracking does not involve a search or a seizure, Judge Paul Lundsten wrote for the unanimous three-judge panel based in Madison.
That means “police are seemingly free to secretly track anyone’s public movements with a GPS device,” he wrote.
The court wants the legislature to fix it:
However, the District 4 Court of Appeals said it was “more than a little troubled” by that conclusion and asked Wisconsin lawmakers to regulate GPS use to protect against abuse by police and private individuals.
I think the odds of that happening are approximately zero.
[Schneier on Security]
I agree. Also note that this really only applies to cops spying on drivers who don’t have cell phones. If you’ve got a cell phone, it’s simpler and cheaper for the cops to spy on you using the tracking device you paid for and volunteered to carry around rather than going to the trouble of bugging your car.