Getting Colder: The Cloak of the 4th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution

Interesting recent article about the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (“UAVs”) / drones in the context of law enforcement, and more specifically “thermal imaging.”  An excerpt that discusses the relevant law:

Demand for the use of surveillance drones by law enforcement is growing rapidly, but the rules for their use haven’t yet caught up with that demand, engendering fears of unwarranted searches.

Drones are equipped with powerful video cameras and infrared (thermal imaging) devices capable of seeing through roofs, but they can also be fitted with radar speed-cameras and other miniaturized equipment capable of performing chemical analyses, environmental sampling, industrial emission monitoring, radiation detection, and much more.

In 2001, the Supreme Court ruled 5-4 in Kyllo v. United States that using thermal imaging to search within a home fell within the scope of the Fourth Amendment, which says that people have the right “to be secure in their persons, houses, paper, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures,” and that “no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause.”

If the courts cannot help with this, well, you could dress up, it seems: