Homeland Security – Search and More

We all know that the searches performed at Airports in the US aren’t random but most of us who travel there tend to accept it as the cost of going and don’t really mind, but not this is going a little overboard. Homeland Security just passed a new directive that these border patrol people can search your digital media, meaning that they can switch on your computer and go through your data, and make copies of your data if they see it as necessary. That includes photo and video data on your camera or video camera, they can store that as well. And this is all based on their discretion, this is for domestic and international flights, so you are at the mercy of government agents who are at the bottom of the food chain being paid very little. The bad part is that the decision is left to these people which I think will be a catastrophic. Just for those who don’t know, if they find any copyrighted data such as movies or TV shows they might act on it. So I think its a time for people to get a little tech savvy in keeping their private data private.

Link: DigitalTrends

A guy who is just trying to enjoy life!


  1. Even worse news for the people on special registration! These days traveling to the US feels like your entering a maximum security zone.

  2. Even in Hethrow’s Airport they had almost a similar level of security. For the first time they demanded I opened my laptop bag. Next, they took out every single wire, adapter, HD, laptop gadget..etc.. and scanned it with some metal device. Later the other security guy asked me to open the laptop and the 3rd one took my stuff and almost left with it (not sure where) but in the end they just decided to hand everything over to me without even turning ON the computer. I think it helped that I looked really scared and freaked out and completely silent. They even helped me zip everything back in place before I broke out in tears with their scary investigations.

    But I’m glad they do that! It’s for our own safety. The TV shows thing is gonna be a problem though.

    As an advice though, don’t pack everything electronic in your laptop bag. What got me in trouble was the fact that I had every single wire, adapter, PSP & DS gadget, external hd – everything in that one single bag so it looked suspicious under the X-ray thing.

  3. In Frankfurt they sent me with my laptop to this room where this guy wiped my keyboard with a paper and then put it in this machine to check for bomb making residue or something. Very CSI-ish

  4. nasty … thanx for the heads up on that

    *note to self: don’t travel with laptop to the US, buy one there :p

  5. dee

    “keeping private data private”

    Surely those security guys are not that tech savvy so what’s the best way to get around these stupid checks with all the mp3s on our laptops?!

    and I agree, the worst part of traveling to the US is homeland security!

  6. 7aneen

    ambai !! That’s why I keep my laptop in my suitcase,, Not that I have anything to hide.. but PICTURES ? dude, thats going overboard

  7. they can make as many copies as they wish .. all my data is encrypted … company regulation :)

  8. sandland

    Its not just the US or Europe…. Saudi is screening passenger’s laptops and hard drives for porn.

    How sad….Here’s the info:

    Please be advised that all Airports in Saudi Arabia have a new rule regarding departure and arriving Overseas workers carrying electronic devices. This has not been published to the public, but please advise all our workers who are traveling to K.S.A.

    * All Electronic devices will be submitted for check up before immigration section.

    o Devices includes Cellular phones with camera and memory card, flash disks, external hard drive, Laptops / notebooks / pc, ipod, itouch, mp3 players with memory cards.
    o A special USB device will be inserted to the electonic devices that you are carrying. This special device can scan all videos and pictures, jpg, bmp, avi, etc, contents of your laptap / cellphones, and will be recorded to their main computer.
    o All devices with nude pictures in it will be confiscated immediately. There will be no fines, and refusal will send you to jail and deportation.
    o Laptops with pirated software’s will also be confiscated.

    This rule has been applied already and is being practiced in Riyadh, Dammam and Jeddah Airports. This is excluding Bahrain airport.

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