The US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit recently ruled that the benefits of smart meters outweighs the privacy issues that come along with the data they collect. The Naperville Smart Meter Awareness group had sued the City of Naperville over the smart meter program, claiming the devices gathered too much information about residents and infringe on privacy.
But the court decided energy consumption data collected by the meters is a valid search protected by the Fourth Amendment, and the city’s collection of smart meter data in this context was reasonable.
The court did note that the city is not at liberty to disclose this information to third parties without a warrant or court order, and said their ruling could change if data were to be collected at intervals shorter than every 15 minutes.
Naperville News 17’s Kim Pirc reports.