Traveler data copied and stored for 15 years: the accusations against the US border authorities

Traveler data copied and stored for 15 years: the accusations against the US border authorities

From October to July, the agency recorded data from 38,567 devices. For Ron Wyden, a senator from Oregon, it is indiscriminate information extortion.

They take phones, tablets and computers, collect the data and keep it for 15 years. The American border authorities, without any mandate, collect the information of “10,000 devices every year, “writes the Washington Post. It all ends up in a huge database. Inside are call logs, contact lists, photos, messages, sensitive data, which 2,700 agents del US Customs and Border Protection (CBP), collect and store to avoid possible threats or find criminal suspects.

A mechanism that the senator Ron Wydenin a letter to the CBP Commissioner Chris Magnus, he described as “indiscriminate extortion from American private records without suspicion of a crime.” In fact, the searched travelers are almost always neither suspected criminals nor possible threats.

Not only. While law enforcement agencies have to submit a warrant to access or search people’s electronic devices, border authorities do not. Based on an exception to the Fourth Amendment it is possible to perform basic searches on any traveler crossing the border. They are not informed of their rights, and if they refuse to unlock electronic devices, authorities could confiscate phones and laptops for five days.

Alexa can now speak in italics

The Battle of Ron Wyden

Ronald Lee “Ron” Wyden, is a US politician, current senator for the state of Oregon. Democrat, progressive, two years ago he had already asked to open an investigation into the use of personal data by the CBP. In his letter to Chris Magnus he writes: “Innocent Americans should not be tricked into unlocking their phones and laptops. CBP should not download data obtained through thousands of warrantless phone searches into a central database, data for fifteen years and allow thousands of DHS employees to search Americans’ personal data whenever they want. “

The senator then added on his profile Twitter: “I have discovered that customs and border officials are archiving a huge treasure trove of data from the personal devices of Americans returning to the country. This is a grave violation of the rights of Americans. I will not stop fighting ”. Only from October to July, the agency recorded the data of 38,567 devices.

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