ACLU Sues TSA Over Domestic Electronics Searches
The American Civil Liberties Union wants to know more about the Transportation Security Administration's policies concerning searches of electronic devices on domestic flights. As such, the ACLU has file a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the TSA seeking the agency's records. "The federal government's policies on searching the phones, laptops, and tablets of domestic air passengers remain shrouded in secrecy,” said ACLU attorney Vasudha Talla. "TSA is searching the electronic devices of domestic passengers, but without offering any reason for the search.We don’t know why the government is singling out some passengers, and we don’t know what exactly TSA is searching on the devices. Our phones and laptops contain very personal information, and the federal government should not be digging through our digital data without a warrant." Specifically, the lawsuit seeks the TSA's records related to policies, procedures, or protocols for conducting searches, as well as information about what devices are used to conduct the searches, and what training is involved. The ACLU notes that in October 2017 the TSA did announce heightened screening procedures for domestic flights, but the agency has yet to divulge any details. The ACLU first asked the TSA for details in December, but it has yet to receive any information from the agency. Customs and Border Control has more latitude to search the electronics of passengers arriving via international flights.
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