Could some kind folk expound a bit on the likely details of how these things transpire? I think folk are getting far too wrapped up in the sordid details here. I don't care if all that was stolen was a simple 2-byte text file. I'd like a better idea of WHEN this happens.
Apparently, if this is/was a "game", then there must be some common reason officers have access to phones. What IS this?!? It certainly isn't your routine traffic stop. What are the likely situations which would make phones available to officers for an extended period of time? When phones are taken as "evidence"? When phones have to be put in a locker or held whenever anyone enters a court?
The article(s) seemed not to go into details here.
Next, the article mentions this was discovered by noticing a few photos were synced. I realize it's a bit harder for iPhones vs. Android, but isn't it still easy enough to transfer files in such a way that essentially leaves no significant record of having done such?
What PREVANTIVE options exist here? I realize without user-controlled encryption, not much is going to prevent the 3-letter folk, but surely Officer Friendly can be thwarted more readily? Again I don't care what kind of file/picture/music/etc. Since the article(s) didn't go into depth, I cannot easily tell whether there was an expectation that the police have access (as in evidence).