Laptops being confiscated at US airports


Mar 17, 2008
Awwww - "They're keeping us safe" (bless their hearts), The wonderful world of George Orwell is alive and well in the Grand Old United States of America. Just found out about a little known law that allows any customs agents to confiscate your Laptop, Cell Phone, PDA, Blackberry, DVD's, or any other electric media at any US border - most likely an airport - for decryption and analysis without any need for probable cause or suspicion of a commitment (or planned commitment) of crime.

If that doesn't rock your world enough this should - They can hold on to your stuff as long as they want so technically NEVER have to give it back..... and people say The Dept of Homeland Security is full of A-hole Slackers.... this proves they're busy nabbing terrorists, drug smugglers, and violators of copyright or trademark laws so BACK OFF !!! Here's where you can read the official documents -


When these policies become widely known world wide there will obviously be a lot of jealousy, I suspect, because we are so well protected and taken care of. People of "lesser lands" will feel left out - hey, you know, SORRY MAN !!! I'm glad some super brilliant, sharp as a knife customs guy cares for me. Just put me in the "John McCain Mavrick Box" because the more of this type of "law and order" the better. Maybe with "The Mavrick" in charge we can finally put all gays in camps and hang all abortionists. That will fix all that's wrong with America and then we can live a happy and meaningful life. ROCK ON you wild and crazy Fascists !!!

DUDESTER (dreaming of being a full time expat and having my EU dual citizenship)
Which country?
It´s good, because now I am sure I won´t go to the USA for a long time, even when the dollar is 1,50. But thank god the USA is keeping the terrorists out
Yeah, the US is keeping the terrorists out for sure .... oh, except for the Canadian and Mexican land borders by foot BUT besides that, GOOD JOB BOYS (and girls) !!!!

What Country ? - any country is suspect, read the history of the Nazi's (it's sort of a repeat kinda thing coming back - new cast, same script)......
Wow, please tell me that you guys are NOT THAT UNEDUCATED. This law was NOT made for normal people. I don't think that any of us here posed as a NATIONAL SECURITY risk and will be flagged by the DEA, FBI, & the NSA anytime soon... To add to this nonsense, it would take DAYS and even WEEKS to analyze each individual files in laptop, harddrive, and just about every storage media that each of those individuals may have on them. That, my friend is how long it takes. I have a relative who works with high-tech forensics for a government agency and even he said that it would be impossible to analyze every single person with those items at the airport or at the border crossing. Please stop crying "WOLF!" this only applies to people who are flagged and are detained with a probable cause (drug smuggling, money laundering, embezzling, child molesters, etc.) not the mom & pops crowd, or people like you & me. Setting off a metal detector because you forgot to take out your watch or necklace is NOT a probable cause. Should there be such a search, EVERYONE of us would be a month late to our flight or border crossing. The internet REALLY blow things out of proportion (think of Idiocracy everyone). =)
Mike, sorry to dissapoint, but my experience backs up the fears; to save on airfares I travelled via the god o'l USofA christmas time, I never actually entered the country, only Chicargo airport, I had my fingerprints taken,eye photographed, and all my luggage searched. Obviously I am a terrorist threat, UK citizen, white anglo saxon protestant, never visited the middle east, and have worked for a US company for 30 years.
All my Christmas presents were ripped open and damaged, but at least they said "have a nice day" In future I will stick to transiting countries that stick to the Geneva Convention.
I also have had my luggage searched, been subject to a full body search(not even in the USA) and have had my hard-disc checked.
I think I have flown over 200 times but this shit does only happen when you fly to the USA.
BTW I am a white European male, a threat to national security offcourse
It also depends on how much you carry on you. I've been searched because I've had 3 VERY HEAVY check-in lugguages, and 2 BIG carry-ons. For me, that's normal since it's part of my profession, I'm carrying more than the average person would, so it's expected. It is kind of a probable cause because of that.
Mike, no offense but you are one NAIVE dude. You think all this crap is just being done for "protection from the big bad terrorists?" If so, give me an effing break !!! I have been lucky enough (Unlucky would also fit at times - I feel that more and more these days) to spend a lot of my adult years traveling the world (I'm somewhere near 80 countries - many with numerous repeat returns - but have never done a super accurate count). I haven't traveled for the last 2 years but plan to start it up again soon so I can see the dozen or so places/countries I still wanna see and get my DIGITAL photography going (plus getting away from America is ALWAYS a bonus for me - ESPECIALLY in this last decade or so).

I used to go to EASTERN EUROPE a lot during the "Cold War" years. Also have been to many other countries with repressed, corrupt, sometimes even Purely Evil Governments in the course of all my traveling. Let me tell you something, the power hungry, arrogant, imperialistic attitudes I have seen MANY TIMES in these f**ked up countries during these last decades of International travel I now see creeping into America at a very powerful and expedited speed (and it scares the crap out of me cause there's only one out come). It's VERY ALARMING how the rules of law are being over ridden by flimsy bull sh*t excuses about THEM protecting US. They're not "PROTECTING US" !!! They can't do sh*t.... look at New Orleans, 5 days to get fresh water to the people in the Dome !?!?! What if that was a terrorist attack and not a natural disaster? They were the "Key Stone Cops on 9/11/2001, not even knowing how many or which planes had been hijacked, and were the KS Cops once again in New Orleans.

The USA is now all about CONTROL AND POWER AND WAR and that's it. It's not the first country to be in this position but you would think that our idiotic citizens would have a clue by now and not be jived by the "Shell Game Men" What a truly stupid country we live in (and that's why I want out) - THOSE THAT DO NOT LEARN FROM THE PAST ARE CONDEMNED TO REPEAT IT. Damn straight, where's Caligula because this IS the Roman Empire all over again (if only they would put on the "Lions eating the Extreme Fundamentalist Christians" show again - now that would be a sell out - step aside "Madonna Tour", I'm not talking about normal, balanced religious people, I'm talking about extreme fundamentalist nut jobs from any of the major religions).

Dylan said "A Hard Rain Was Gonna Fall" - you can bet your a** the storm is almost here, the sky is already full of very dark clouds, that's for sure. I always wonder how many big smiles there were amongst the Neo Con gang on 9/11/2001, what a gift for those pigs, "NOW WE HAVE AN EXCUSE TO DO ANYTHING IN THE NAME OF PROTECTION !!!" Burn the Constitution !!! Who ever thought we would be alive to see the Fall of the US Empire.... AMAZING how things happen when you don't expect them to.....

Oh, I forgot to add this last time. Let's hope Oliver Stone rips GWB a new "one" with this film (coming out in October) I heard it's BRUTAL (Good, W DESTROYED my country, it's payback time for the little pr*ck and all his criminal friends)


Too bad OLIVER didn't make this film 8 years ago - think how different things would be now. 8 years of pure idiot rule leaves a BIG MESS......
You have BIGGER problems to worry about rather than a search at the customs. Just read this. This is why I make my own adventures or do an extensive research before
I travel. I noticed that you have a very strong Anti-American sentiments and that
America is a fascist state attitude dudester. Corruption is
everywhere, and here is not an exception either, it just boils down to
how much money is put into the media to cover it up... Turn off your
television and go outside for a while, see the world for what it really
is. Take a 'hood tour with an NGO or something. This is the MOST
uneducated comment I've ever read. You're sounding as bad as those
ignorant radical leftist in the US who has never travelled past that
500 mile radius of what they called their world (there are extremes on
both ends you know?). I was there shortly after Katrina and I have
been trained for disaster search and rescue operations. It's not as
easy as you think. Working through rubbles and threading through the
waist deep water with the stench of rotting bodies in the air is not
my idea of having fun in New Orleans. Did I mention the possibility of
an encounter with the gators from the nearby swamps? Getting to those
people at the dome in the 90-100 degrees is not exactly the easiest
thing to get used to. As far as provisions, we've only had what's on
our back for a few days at a time. After a few weeks, that search &
rescue operation became a clean up and extraction, basically rounding
up the
dead bodies that we've encountered for identification later. Just
think about the radius of the the damage and the limited resources we
had with us. When the sun goes down, it's pitch black and we had to
set camp. There were no electricity for anything modern like the
internet while I was there, my friend. The only thing we could think
about were to find someone who can still breathe or hear a cry for
help. Try doing that for a few months. You only see it from TV and
from what you've heard or read on the papers. Putting things into words
is one thing, being there and are aware of the truth is another. So go
throw that naive crap on someone else, I've gone through enough to deal
with that kind of ignorance.
Holy sh*t Mike, you're defending the way New Orleans was handled !?!?! Man, I thought I've heard it all.... check this out hombre, Even FEMA admits they effed up BIG TIME... The Government admits it (a very rare occurrence) but you're still defending them, my God !!! WAKE UP !!!

LISTEN UP - THERE ARE NO EXCUSES FOR NEW ORLEANS or 9/11 !!! End of discussion (for your information, a few years before 9/11/2001 the French stopped an attempt by some Algerian Hijackers as they took over an Air France plane and planned on crashing it into the Eiffel Tower. SOMEHOW French Elite forces did their job right, killed all of them at a fake "Refueling stop". There are NO EXCUSES for a job done wrong). You work for the US Government Mike? I suspect it's very possible.....

Listen, I really can't waste my time discussing this with you any further cause IMHO you are way too far gone. Just stay blind to what the US Government is up to and one day soon you will wake up in a beautiful, totally fascist country. Like so many other naive, clueless Americans that don't see the "Tsunami" coming until they're 20 ft under water you just continue to live in your fantasy world.

Really, I can't deal with such an unaware, simplistic thought process. My girl friend's sister just had a baby girl 5 days ago, getting you to understand would be like trying to explain it all to the newborn and having her "get it". Somethings are just impossible to do. Talk to me when you "get a clue" (and read some World History books), Dudester