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Research Topic: Law Enforcement Access to Smart Phone Data


1. United States v. Keck

2. Riley v. California


1. Under what conditions or circumstances are law enforcement officers allowed to search an individual’s personal devices?

2. Under what conditions are law enforcement agencies allowed to remotely access an individual’s personal devices?

Research Questions:

1. Does the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution provide protection against searches of an individual’s personal devices, e.g. smart phones or tablets?

2. Do legal precedents allowing warrantless physical searches of smart phones extend to allowing the use of forensic technologies to obtain local and/or remote access to data stored on the device?

3. What technologies are available to law enforcement agencies for use in conducting local and/or remote search and recovery of data from personal devices such as smart phones, tablet computers, etc.?


1. Your research must include articles in professional journals and/or other types of scholarly publications (e.g. dissertations or theses).

2.  For example, the summary must have at least two (2) sources.

3. Research the two cases listed in this assignment as well as similar cases in the United States at both the state and federal levels. Your research should include locating information relevant to answering the legal question and issues listed above.

4. Research technologies used to bypass restrictions on access to user data stored on smart phones (see ). Include both local (physical) access and remote access (e.g. via spyware).

5. Research mobile forensics products including those which are restricted to authorized parties such as law enforcement organizations. See Identify three or more appropriate products, their capabilities, and any restrictions on purchase or use imposed by the vendor or by laws.

6. Using your research, answer the three research questions including information about the availability and use of technology solutions and mobile forensics products to aug