U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, the longest-serving justice on the court, is dead.
Scalia was found dead Saturday morning at a ranch outside of Marfa, Texas, where the justice had been hunting quail. The death was of natural causes, according to federal officials.
A priest has been called to Marfa to provide for the deceased.
Scalia served as justice on the Supreme Court since 1986 when he was appointed by President Ronald Reagan. He was 79 when he died.
By Justin Munce
Police Need Warrant to Track Your Cellphone, Supreme Court Rules
“[A]n individual maintains a legitimate expectation of privacy in the record of his physical movements” – Chief Justice John Roberts
This week, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled for a change in the law regulating the ability of police to search citizens’ phone records.
Since a 1979 ruling, which decided that citizens had no expectation of privacy for their phone records kept by a phone company, police have been able to search people’s phones without probable cause (strong evidence the person has committed a crime). However, police can still obtain records without a warrant in the case of an emergency, and they can search other items people carry without probable cause.
The court found that “an individual maintains a legitimate expectation of privacy in the record of his physical movements” as these movements are captured and recorded by phone companies.
The majority of the Supreme court framed the question in terms of a shift in the role and capabilities of technology, specifically cell phones and data collection and records, with one writing that a mobile phone was now “a feature of human anatomy” that “faithfully follows its owner beyond public thoroughfares and into private residences, doctor’s offices, political headquarters, and other potentially revealing locales” and “when the government tracks the location of a cell phone it achieves near perfect surveillance, as if it had attached an ankle monitor to the phone’s user.”
The decision was 5-4.
Ex-CIA Head on Wikileaks: "That's the World We Live in Right Now"
Wikileaks dumped a large amount of classified CIA documents this week. Thousands of pages detailed how the CIA’s software and techniques gather information, including how they hack into smartphones, computers, and internet-connected TVs. Wikileaks said the release was just the first installment of a larger collection.
Many apps were named specifically with details about how the CIA is able to enter them. There was also mention of a technique used to “crash” computers.
CIA insiders said the likeliest source of the breach was contractors the CIA worked with, according to PBS NewsHour, who interviewed former CIA Director Leon Panetta, who served during the Obama administration.
Panetta said that the most important thing with the leak was going to be “how do you replace those important tools that have now been made public, and try to reestablish our intelligence capabilities so we can gather the information that is absolutely essential in order to protect our country.
“This has been seriously damaging to the CIA and its ability to conduct intelligence operations. So I imagine that our first focus is on ‘What do we do to try to replace our ability to go after terrorists.”
Panetta commented on earlier leaks and steps that would have been taken to try to make their tools more secure but, “We are clearly living in a world in which the ability to hack has developed to a point where I happen to think that probably anything is vulnerable today.
“So I think you try to take steps to try to protect that kind of sensitive information, try to do what you can to make sure that those who are working for you are taking steps to protect it, contractors are taking steps to protect it, but the bottom line is that in today’s world I think you always have to be prepared that somebody may very well be able to get access to that kind of information, and if they do that they will make it public. I think that’s the world we live in right now.”
Panetta was asked about why the CIA needs these tools, when the NSA is responsible for those things. He said that the CIA is responsible for gathering information from overseas.
“There’s a reason we have not had another 9-11 attack in this country, and a lot of that is because our intelligence agencies, our law enforcement agencies, are sharing information and gathering information that makes sure we protects the United States.”