Golden Gate University Law Review


This Comment argues that the current state of Fourth Amendment law vis-à-vis searching cloud-stored documents on a mobile device is untenable. Part I of this Comment defines cloud storage and cloud computing, and it provides background information on the Stored Communications Act (SCA). Part II discusses the intricacies of applying the SCA to computers and email, which is to date the best analog for applying the SCA to cloud computing. Part III details the legislative and judicial solutions to the problems raised by new technology and concludes that, while new legislation is the most desirable response, in the meantime courts must rethink their notions of what it means to search a mobile device. If either the legislature or the judiciary can reform a troubled Fourth Amendment jurisprudence as it relates to new technology, hope remains that reports of the Fourth Amendment’s death have been greatly exaggerated.