“The fact that technology now allows an individual to carry such information in his hand does not make the information any less worthy of the protection for which the Founders fought.”
—U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts in Riley v. California (2014)
Technological innovation has outpaced our privacy protections. As a result, our digital footprint can be tracked by the government and corporations in ways that were once unthinkable.
This digital footprint is constantly growing, containing more and more data about the most intimate aspects of our lives. This includes our communications, whereabouts, online searches, purchases, and even our bodies. When the government has easy access to this information, we lose more than just privacy and control over our information. Free speech, security, and equality suffer as well.
The ACLU fights in the courts, lobbies in the legislature, and works with technology companies to ensure that civil liberties are protected as technology advances. We are working to secure a warrant requirement for law enforcement access to electronic information, to chip away at the government’s excessive secrecy surrounding its surveillance practices, to promote the proliferation of privacy-protective technologies, and more.
Americans should not have to choose between using new technologies and protecting their civil liberties. We work to ensure a future in which the Fourth Amendment ban on unreasonable searches extends to digital property and your data is your own.