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“If long-term monitoring can be accomplished without committing a technical trespass _ suppose for example, that the federal government required or persuaded auto manufacturers to include a GPS tracking device in every car _ the court’s theory would provide no protection,” Alito said.

Sotomayor agreed. “It may be necessary to reconsider the premise that an individual has no reasonable expectation of privacy in information voluntarily disclosed to their parties,” she said.

A federal appeals court in Washington had overturned Jones’s drug conspiracy conviction because police did not have a warrant when they installed a GPS device on his vehicle and then tracked his movements for a month. The Supreme Court agreed with the appeals court.

The case is U.S. v. Jones, 10-1259.