When the police ask for an individual’s search history, or perhaps their call records, most people have the understanding that those records are only provided after the police have a reasonable suspicion that their suspect was involved with the crime under investigation. Recently unsealed documents from an arson investigation show that the police took the opposite approach when looking for their suspect, specifically they requested that Google provide them with a list of individuals who had searched for arson (and similar topics) to create a list of potential suspects. Rather than providing Google with a list of names, IP addresses, phone numbers, or other identifying information the police gave Google a list of search terms and were provided that identifying information. While this undoubtedly provides a useful tool to the police when dealing with a case where there are no apparent leads or suspects, it does seem to break the normal cycle that police use to request records about an individual. Rather than providing identifying information, a process created to so that an individual’s right to privacy is protected, they can now see everyone who is in any way associated with a crime. This creates the opportunity for an individual to be arrested without any physical evidence ever being discovered, as the police may request a wide swathe of data about search terms, then narrow that list down to several individuals about whom they would request more detailed information about. This type of warrant may represent a violation of an individual’s Fourth Amendment rights against unlawful search and seizure, as the police would have no reason to suspect someone and yet are still requesting their information. Police have previously requested, and received, data from Google that shows all individual’s within a given geographic area over a period of time. Again, while undeniably powerful, it does raise questions about police overreach. After all, there are supposed to be measures in place that stop the police from broadly surveying everyone at all times. Google has attempted to defend the practice of supplying data to geographic or keyword-based warrants by stating that they represent ~1% of all requests from law enforcement. How that logic will hold up in court may soon be seen, as lawmakers and advocacy groups across the country move to challenge these kinds of lawsuits or enact new laws to outlaw them.