ACLU seeks info on how police use cellphone data

By the Associated Press | August 3, 2011 | 6:00 PM EDT

NEW YORK (AP) — American Civil Liberties Union affiliates around the country are demanding local law enforcement agencies disclose how they collect and use cellphone location data.

The New York City-based organization said Wednesday that 34 affiliates are sending hundreds of open-records requests to law enforcement agencies.

The groups want to know whether law enforcement agencies must obtain warrants to access cellphone location data and statistics on how often such data are used. The requests have gone to large, urban agencies and smaller, rural ones.

ACLU staff attorney Catherine Crump says the goal is to raise awareness of what local law enforcement agencies are doing.

Congress is considering a bill to force police to obtain a warrant before collecting cellphone location information.