Another Judge Rules Encryption Passphrase not Testimonial Under Fifth Amendment

I previously discussed, on a bar association section blog in 2007 and 2009, the case of In re Boucher, where a U.S. judge for the District of Vermont ruled that requiring a criminal defendant to produce an unencrypted version of his laptop’s hard-drive, which was believed to contain child pornography, did not constitute compelled testimonial communication. The circuit court appeal in Boucher was dropped, but a new case has surfaced in the U.S. Court for the District of Colorado, United States v. Fricosu. There, a bank fraud defendant’s home was searched pursuant to a warrant, and a computer seized which held encrypted files. Further, Defendant provided evidence indicating her ownership computer, that she knew it was encrypted, and that it contained inculpatory evidence…

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