Canadian court rules there is no privacy expectation in IP addresses

The Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta, Canada, has ruled that there is no privacy expectation associated with an Internet Protocol (IP) address. As such, law enforcement agencies do not need a warrant to require such information from service providers or other third parties. The ruling was issued in a case related to the illegal possession and use of third-party credit cards and personal identification documents. The court ruled that the accused had a reasonable expectation of privacy in international mobile subscriber identity (IMSI) and international mobile equipment identity (IMEI) numbers, as they facilitate access to certain personal information. Unlike these numbers, an IP address was found to provide less personal information about a particular individual. For example, the IP address, on its own, did not provide a link to, or any other information about, a street address or a person.