WaPo: Third party rights and the Carpenter cell-site case by Orin Kerr:
In Carpenter v. United States, the Supreme Court will decide whether a warrant is required for the government to obtain historical cell-site records from a customer’s account. This post asks a question for those who think the answer should be “yes”: How do you deal with the Fourth Amendment rights of the cellphone providers? I’m not sure what the answer should be, but I think it’s an important question to help understand the issues and stakes in Carpenter.
This is a complex issue, so I’m going to break it down into three steps. I’ll start with an overview of the third-party doctrine. I’ll then turn to third-party rights under current law. I’ll next consider different ways the third-party rights might work if the Supreme Court holds that a warrant is required.