With warrantless cell phone searches increasingly allowed by law enforcement, the privacy aficionado prone to losing phones or getting arrested will want to be able to lock the cops out manually, and it looks like Android's the best operating system for that. Wired found a court document showing that FBI agents trying to access the phone of a suspected San Diego pimp had to break down and apply for a search warrant to get Google to provide the suspect's email login and password after the Android's signature pattern-based screen lock proved too tough for them to crack on their own.
Specifically, it was a Samsung Exhibit II that flummoxed the FBI. But the operating system's the key here: "An Android device requires the handset’s Google e-mail address and its accompanying password to unlock the handset once too many wrong swipes are made," Wired reported. After a federal judge ruled earlier this month that law enforcement didn't need warrants to search the contents of cell phones -- following on similar state-level rulings in California and elsewhere -- the pattern lock is the only thing standing between the police and your phone's contents, should they get ahold of the device itself. So if you've got secrets riding around in your phone, Android seems like the way to go.
[Image via Mike Dent / Flickr]
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.