Andrew Guthrie Ferguson

The Internet of Things and the Fourth Amendment of Effects

“Smart objects” connected to the “Internet of Things” present new possibilities for technological surveillance. This network of smart devices also poses a new challenge for a Fourth Amendment built around “effects.” The constitutional language protecting “persons, houses, papers, and effects” from unreasonable searches and seizures must confront this change. This Article addresses how a Fourth Amendment built on old-fashioned “effects” can address a new world where things are no longer just inactive, static objects, but objects that create and communicate data with other things.

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