Does the fifth amendment cover your password protected data?

When it comes to pleading the fifth, the digital age is making things complicated. A federal judge in Wisconsin has just granted more time for defense attorneys arguing a suspected owner of child pornography shouldn't have to decrypt his hard drives.

The Fifth Amendment has been defined as a protection against incriminating yourself. The government can demand a blood sample, or a lock box key, but it can't force you to voice thoughts in your head that might sway a jury. So what about a password to a hard drive -- is that a thought, or thing?

Jeffrey Rosen, legal scholar and president of the Constitution Society, joins Marketplace Tech host Ben Johnson to discuss.

About the author

Ben Johnson is the host of Marketplace Tech.


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