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NYC Litigation Blog

Friday, August 3, 2018

Your FitBit Could Testify Against You in Court

What new technologies could play a role in civil litigation cases?

As technological innovations continue to shape our world today, more data from our wearable and other technologies are making their way into court. Data from your FitBit, Alexa, Apple watch, and like devices could prove relevant in any number of civil litigation cases, from personal injury actions to business disputes. Already, data from personal devices have been used in courts across the country. Our New York City civil litigation lawyers discuss the role of wearable technologies in personal injury and other cases below.

Your FitBit or Apple Watch Is Tracking Your Movements

Every day, we unknowingly share a tremendous amount of data without even realizing it. By purchasing and wearing a FitBit, Apple Watch, or a like health type wearable device, we allow the device to track our movements. Your wearable health device knows where you were and when. It keeps a record of your heart rate at any given moment, your exact location, how much exercise you obtain, and the like.

While generally this information is used simply to provide you with a better understanding of your level of physical activity, there are instances in which this data could be critical in court. Already, in a few criminal cases, judges have allowed the introduction of wearable device data to either prove or disprove an alibi. Information obtained from your wearable device could also prove critical in a civil litigation case. For example, data showing you have been extremely active after an accident that allegedly left you seriously injured could be damaging to your case. Alternatively, in a business litigation action, evidence that one partner who was supposed to be running the business only went into work once a week could help a judge decide a dispute.

In addition to wearable technologies, home devices like Alexa also offer potentially relevant information for civil litigation and criminal actions. Alexa stores a wide variety of questions posed to it. While this information is supposed to be kept private, courts have elected to force the disclosure of some technological data where it is pertinent to the matter at hand. To protect your technological data or for help acquiring relevant technological information from the other party to your action, contact a civil litigation lawyer.


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