Wiretap Order, not a Search Warrant, Needed to Obtain Certain Information from Facebook

The April 18, 2022 Trending Law Blog post discussed how, in Facebook, Inc. v. State of New Jersey, the New Jersey Appellate Division held that a communications data warrant, rather than a wiretap order, was required for law enforcement officers to obtain “prospective electronically stored information” from Facebook users as part of an ongoing criminal investigation.

In a June 29, 2023 decision, however, the Supreme Court of New Jersey unanimously reversed the determination of the Appellate Division.

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Know Your Rights

According to the American Civil Liberties Union, “A growing number of employers and schools are demanding that job applicants and students hand over the passwords to their private social networking accounts.


Congress unsuccessfully attempted to address those concerns with the Social Networking Online Protection Act (“SNOPA”) in 2013. SNOPA would have prohibited employers and certain institutions of higher education from requesting passwords or social networking access from employees, applicants for employment, students or potential students, or from taking adverse actions against employees, students or potential students who declined to provide their passwords or access to their social media accounts. Unfortunately SNOPA was never enacted, despite being introduced three times by New York Congressman Eliot Engel.

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