Hastings Constitutional Law Quarterly


Taylor Hobin


In a series of rulings by the U.S. District Court for the District of Oregon and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, it is suggested that a person may not have an expectation of privacy in some computer files that are accessible through a secured, or unsecured, wireless network. This Note uses the reasoning in these court decisions to create a framework for analyzing the Fourth Amendment's application to secured and unsecured wireless Internet networks.

This Note concludes that the trespass analysis derived from United States v. Jones would establish a more predictable and functional standard when analyzing a search of a wireless Internet network. This is because the court can focus on what matters: the constitutional protection of the area that contains the wireless network.