In an opinion yesterday, Judge Forrest rejected a Fourth Amendment challenge to the “T-PEP” system, which allows the City to collect GPS data on cab drivers:
As the Second Circuit has already ruled, plaintiff had no reasonable expectation of privacy in the T-PEP data at issue. Buliga [v. New York City Taxi & Limousine Comm’n], 324 F. App’x 82 [(2d Cir. 2009)]. Local law requires the collection of the data. Prior to the installation of the T-PEP system, drivers were required to create “trip sheets” containing the same information. . . . The gravamen of plaintiff’s complaint — and most of the facts he marshals regarding his expectations of defendants’ conduct — is not a challenge to the process of collecting the data from vehicles, but rather a challenge to the use of the data in administrative proceedings. Plaintiff claims that, because “the TLC issued repeated assurances that it would not use GPS tracking as a prosecutorial tool,” there is thus “every reason for taxi drivers to expect that the agency would not track individuals and then use the collected evidence as the basis for regulatory charges and license revocations.” Plaintiff’s conflation of collection and usage is unavailing here. Essentially, plaintiff alleges, based on a set of facts involving defendants’ statements about the T-PEP system, that he reasonably expected that defendants would “not use GPS tracking as a prosecutorial tool.” That may be the case, but that is legally irrelevant to the Fourth Amendment analysis here. The subsequent use of data does not create a privacy interest in the information that does not otherwise exist.
Prior posts on the case are here.