How Police Can Extract All Your Cellphone Data in Minutes

Thursday, July 28, 2022 - 3:00pm to 4:00pm
Join the ACLU-WA to learn from Upturn about the widespread power of law enforcement to search mobile phones and the implications of MDFT use on privacy and civil liberties.

Over 2,000 law enforcement agencies, including Seattle Police Department routinely use technology called Mobile Device Forensic Tools (MDFT) to quickly extract and analyze all the information on a person’s cell phone — often without a warrant — but the public is often unaware of their use and the implications this technology can have on people’s lives and communities. 

Using MDFTs, law enforcement can access call logs, contacts, texts, emails, social media posts, photos, location information, search history, and more. In particular, the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision in Dobbs v. Jackson, which overturned Roe v. Wade, has raised new concerns about the use of MDFTs by law enforcement and the intersections between digital privacy and reproductive rights.