US court says ‘pocket-dialed’ calls are not private
A federal appeals court in Ohio has ruled that a person who accidentally “pocket dials” someone shouldn’t expect any overheard conversation to be considered private.
The case involves the chairman of the Airport Board in Kenton, Kentucky, which oversees the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport. The chairman, James Huff, was on a business trip in Italy with his wife and a colleague when he accidentally pocket-dialed the secretary of the airport’s CEO back in the U.S.
The secretary, Carol Spaw, said “hello” a few times and soon figured out the call wasn’t meant for her. But she overheard Huff and his colleague talking about personnel matters, including the possibility that the airport’s CEO—Spaw’s boss—might be replaced. The inadvertent call continued after Huff got back to his hotel room with his wife.