NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – A major decision handed down by the U.S. Supreme Court Friday will impact the privacy rights of every American who has a cell phone.

The Supreme Court has ruled that if a law enforcement agency wants access to the personal information stored on an American’s phone, they will have to get a warrant to search it.

“I think people have no idea how little privacy we have enjoyed with regard to governments searching our cell phone records,” Donna Lieberman of the NYCLU told CBS2’s Clark Fouraker.

Prior to Friday’s ruling, law enforcement agencies could ask a cell phone provider for data – such as numbers that had been called from the suspect’s phone or places that phone had been.

New Yorkers had mixed reactions to the court’s ruling.

“I’m glad they do need a warrant to get into your phone records because that is an invasion of privacy,” Melisa Segara said.

“I’m left leaning, but I believe that police need this information in certain cases, and having it drag out and go through court, could sometimes cause a lot of problems,” Rick Weinstein countered.

Legal experts suspect the decision could impact cases in process right now, where cell phone data was used to pinpoint a suspect’s location or call records connecting someone to a crime.


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