The letter specifically identifies two kinds of warrants: so-called “keyword warrants,” which identify every user who has searched for a specific keyword, phrase, or address, and “geofence warrants,” which compel disclosure of all devices in a geofenced area. These blanket warrants circumvent constitutional checks on police surveillance, creating a virtual dragnet of our religious practices, political affiliations, sexual orientation, and more. We asked Google to include a semiannual breakdown of these requests in their transparency reports to aid civil society groups in tracking their growth over time.
Coalition Urges Google to Disclose Information on “Keyword” and “Geofence Warrants”
On December 8, 2020, the Brennan Center joined fifty-nine other organizations in calling on Google to improve its transparency reporting regarding law enforcement’s use of novel warrants to expand access to Google’s data.
Stay up to date