May 182011
 May 18, 2011  Posted by  Featured News, Surveillance

Okay, yes, I added Jacob Appelbaum’s name to the headline. It seemed appropriate.

The Associated Press reports:

Travelers carry so much personal information on laptops, computer disks and smartphones that routine searches of electronic devices at the nation’s borders are too intrusive now, in the view of a bipartisan panel that includes a Republican conservative who once headed border security.

A report released Wednesday by The Constitution Project, a bipartisan legal think tank, recommended that the Homeland Security Department discontinue its policy of searching electronic devices without a reasonable suspicion of wrongdoing.

From Oct. 1, 2008, to June 2, 2010, over 6,500 people — almost half of them U.S. citizens — had electronic devices searched at the border, the report found.

Read more on Fox News.

I do not see the report up on the organization’s web site as of the time of this posting, but look forward to reading it. Certainly anyone who has followed the tweets of Jacob Appelbaum (@ioerror) will be well aware that CBP routinely detains him and their actions seems more like downright harassment than anything else, since they no longer engage in even the pretext of searching for anything that would actually pose any risk to national security or be evidence of any criminal activity.

Harassment – even if conducted politely – is still harassment. I defy the DHS to provide any justification for their treatment of this American citizen. They are either being petty and malicious or they must think Appelbaum is so stupid that after having been detained so many times, he would still travel with anything that might be of remote use to the government.

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