Can the police make you unlock your phone?We check what the recipes say

Can the police make you unlock your phone?We check what the recipes say

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You are walking down the street, you took a picture - you are suddenly stopped by a policeman and tells you to unlock the phone.Will you unlock?Do you know your rights?For many people it is not clear how to behavein this situation.We checked the recipes on whose side.

Źródło: WP.PL

No one needs to be convinced that smartphones are our most private and personal devices today.That is why we are reluctant to access them to strangers, and sometimes even loved ones.However, what if the police demanding access?I have to share my phone, e.g..Patrol on the street?

Looking for answers to these questions and how we should behave when the police demand from us to show the content of the phone, we turned to Dr. Hab.SzymonPawelec from the Faculty of Law and Administration of the University of Warsaw

- There is no short and unequivocal answer to such a general question- says Profa.Dr. hab.SzymonPawelec.- In a nutshell, one can say that one of the basic elements of the principle of the right to defense and one of the foundations of a reliable criminal trial is forcing anyone to provide evidence to your disadvantage.

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Even the suspect does not have to unlock the phone

The police cannot force anyone, even a person suspected of a crime, to unlock the phone.The same principle works here that says that the suspect cannot be forced to provide explanations, and the witness does not have to answer the questions that may hurt him.

- However, it remains to be another thing that the refusal to disclose data voluntarily may -in some situations - be associated with attempts to obtain it without the activity of the detained or suspect himself - says prof..Pawelec.- In each case, however, I think that you can refuse to voluntarily fulfill such a request.The consequences of this refusal and the possible complain of activities carried out as a result of a refusal, however, is a separate topic.

- So if I know I didn't do anything wrong, I can disagree with your phone with a clear conscience?- I ask theinterlocutor.

Czy policja może kazać ci odblokować telefon? Sprawdzamy, co mówią przepisy

- as a lawyer and defender I will say more.It is ratherin a situation where you would feel that he did something and what may be related to this phone or data recordedin it, you should refuse.Then it would be best to contact a lawyer immediately - adds profile.Pawelec.

See also: Cyberstalkingin Poland.The psychologist will help you sooner than the police

Refusal to unlock may lead to arrest

A friend of a policeman who prefers to remain anonymous, told me that the police could not force anyone to unlock the phone.However, patrols ask you to check if the phone is stolen.This is done by verifying the IMEI number - it is revealed after entering a special number of numbers and characters.

Refusal to unlock the phone and provide IMEI, may be a reasonable suspicionin the police that the phone may be stolen.This,in turn, allows you to take further actions and stop the person for 48 hours.

- If the owner of the phone does not want to unlock it, the police may stop it - if there are justified suspicions that the phone containsinformation providing a criminal act or materials that can constitute evidencein a criminal case - comments on WP Tech Adwokat Anna Paszkowska-Wójcik from Klisz i Wspólnicy.

- the owner of the phone is likely to not regain it for a long time.It should be remembered, however, that the decision to stop the item and its approval may be appealed to the court.If the court decides that there were no reasons to stop the device, it will order its return

Can something like this happenin practice?It all depends.A friend of the policeman tells me that nobody wants to play with stopping people who will not unlock the phone to check Imei.On the other hand, there are many cases when the police use their position tointerferein smartphones of random people.

Policemen have abuse of power

In one of them a civilian policeman wanted to answer the phone and delete the video recording of the journalist Maga Mieśnik, who recorded a mass during which the loyals were expelled from the faithful.The Warsaw Police Headquarters later commented that the policeman's behavior was "consistent with both the provisionsin force and the moral duty arising from the ethos of our service to provide support and assistance to thosein need".

- Police have no right to remove entries from the devices owned by the User or to order the removal of the recordings owned from theintervention - Say lawyer Anna Paszkowska.- such a request from an officer may bear the features of exceeding the rights.The law does not provide for restrictions as to the possibility of registering the police.The situation is different with their possible distribution, here, the provisions determining restrictions on publishing the image of other people may apply.

Everything can be used against you

According to Professor Szymon Pawelec, the problem goes even further.In the event of access to the phone and the data contained therein, without the right premises,in a mannerinconsistent with the procedures or simply unlawful, a new issue arises: Can evidence obtained with such violations of law be usedin a criminal case?

In the conditions of the criminal trial, significant changesin this matter brought the provisionsin force since April 2016, directly allowing evidence to use the so -called.illegal evidence.

When I asked the police about whether he could demand from me to unlock the phone or delete movies, I got the following answer:

"The police are not aninstitution, nor entitled to grant a bindinginterpretation of the provisions orinformation on applicable legal regulations, especially when the queries relate to hypothetical matters.(...) Please remember that a policeman does not actin hisinterest, and for all citizens M.in.in this way detecting and recovering stolen phones."

The regulations clearly say that the police have no right to demand from us to unlock the phone.In a situation where there are no legal grounds to review our smartphone, we do not have to follow the officer's recommendation.It is worth remembering and knowing your rights.

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