The case of a California woman who was ordered to unlock an iPhone using her fingerprint is raising questions about whether compelling a person to unlock their smartphone could infringe on their right against self-incrimination.
A warrant was issued in February ordering Paytsar Bkhchadzhyan to unlock an iPhone seized from a Glendale, California, residence. She later pleaded no contest to a felony count of identity theft, according to the Los Angeles Times.
While much of the public discussion over encryption has focused on four to six digit passcodes, the California case is raising the question of whether a person’s biometric markers — such as a fingerprint or iris — could be used to help authorities crack into a device. …
At issue is whether pressing a finger to unlock a phone and giving law enforcement access to all of its contents is tantamount to testifying without ever speaking a word.
“It’s one of those things like always technology is way ahead of the law,” Bartholomew said.