According to the ‘Lectric Law Library’ exigent circumstances are circumstances that are convincing enough to believe that interception is necessary to prevent further physical harm to any person, destruction of relevant evidence, the escape of a suspect, or any other consequence indecently frustrating legitimate law enforcement efforts. Under these circumstances, papgers, other portable electronic devices, and computers can be subjected to search, or put on hold awaiting investigation if the above circumstances apply. The USA PATRIOTIC Act was passed into a law in response to the terrorists’ attacks of September 11, 2001.
The act gives federal official authority to track and intercept communications. The act unites and strengths America by providing appropriate authority and mechanisms required to intercept and obstruct terrorism. Under the computer fraud and abuse section, the act defines a computer as an electronic device that can process information. The processed information can affect affecting interstate or foreign commerce and communication. This includes a computer located inside or outside the United States, title 18 part 1 chapter47 (e)(2) § 1030 This gives federal agents authority to obtain the search warrant for locations outsidetheirdistricts.
Lifestyles have taken a new turn, electronic commerce and social networks; have made everyone a cyber visitor. With this trend, cyber crime has increased, just like the case with the real-world crime. Online records are of great significance in investigating and prosecuting cyber crimes like network intrusions and traditional crimes like threats, fraud, etc. Under the USA PATRIOTIC Act billing list, online records, email header information and generic order are regal documents needed for law enforcement to obtain information regarding temporarily assigned network address billing records from internet service providers.
To prepare for the execution of a search warrant for a computer, a law enforcement officer needs adequate information. This includes authenticated computer records, computer printouts as “summaries,” according to federal rule of evidence, 1006, permits individuals to give summaries of bulky evidence in the form of charts or calculations. Hearsay Vs non hearsay computer records are also necessary.