Technology and the Law

Supreme Court justices argued more than a century ago that the progress of science, especially in the area of communication technology, made it imperative that America's attention shift to the spirit of the law to protect individuals against the privacy invasions of modern inventions. The technological landscape continues to change at a much faster pace than constitutional law, which has yet to deal efficiently with the latest scientific advances in sophisticated devices and computer communications using telephone or cable lines.

Most federal court judgments have been inconsistent during the growth in telecommunications technology. Many of the subsequent instruments of tele-communication networks, such as facsimile transmissions (or faxes) and electronic mail (e-mail), are based on the telephone and make use of the same underground cables, digital lines, ...

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