Using Pacemaker Data to Catch a Criminal

An Ohio man, Ross Compton, was arrested for arson after police found discrepancies in testimony and a cardiologist reviewed his pacemaker’s data that proved that it was improbable that what he alleged happened was possible. Compton was also found with gasoline on his clothing and had allegedly packed multiple bags and broke a window with his cane so he could climb out and carry the heavy bags to his car. The fire was also found to be started in multiple places outside the house. Police used this information to get a warrant for the data stored on Compton’s pacemaker and finally got the nail in the coffin for Compton’s arrest.

When I first saw the headline, I was worried about medical security and that the information was attained in an illegal manner. Further reading showed that the police did get a warrant and followed proper procedures. I am not sure if in the future the medical information will be protected enough to make sure police need to get warrants to attain the information. The general public should be careful to read about how information was actually attained, as to not spread misinformation. I feel like policies should stay the same currently and maybe looked at later when technology gets to the point that the policy needs to be changed, at which point they should bring in computing professionals to help with creating new policy.

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