US Supreme Court Rules Text Message Privacy Case

US-supreme-courtThe Supreme Court of the United States reversed and in effect, ruled, that the police department of Ontario, California, has all the rights to check upon a pager that the city has issued to its employee.

The department disciplined the employee, Jeff Quon, when they found out that he was sending sex-related text messages through the device. Quon said that the department violated his privacy and his Fourth Amendment rights, which is against unreasonable search and seizure. He also sued Arch Wireless for violating the Stored Communications Act by handing over his records to the city.

A lower court ruled that the department has indeed violated Quon’s rights. The US Supreme Court, however, reversed it saying that the city was in the position to implement such a measure, especially since the goal when Quon’s messages were found out was to check if text messaging limit set by the department policy should be increased.

The vote was unanimous, 9-0.