Judge Says DHS Can't Hang Onto Travelers Laptops To Search Much Later Without A Warrant

from the a-bit-of-good-news dept

We just had a story about a court ruling saying that it was okay for customs agents to take a laptop away and search it somewhere else if they had reasonable suspicion. This has followed a string of controversial court decisions, which say there are no 4th amendment rights against unreasonable search and seizure at the border. On top of that, the Department of Homeland Security has made it pretty clear that it feels it can do whatever it wants at the border.

However, there may be some limits. Another recent court ruling has told Homeland Security that it cannot seize a laptop, hang onto it indefinitely and do searches on it many months later without a warrant. It's not entirely clear where the line lies here. The court basically says that earlier searches of the same laptop were fine, but there was no reason to hold onto it for so many months and then do another search.
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Filed Under: 4th amendment, border, customs, laptops, privacy, searches, warrants


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  1. icon
    Overcast (profile), 11 Jun 2010 @ 8:39am

    They can't just use MS Cofee for it? lol

    Computer Online Forensic Evidence Extractor (COFEE)

    http://www.microsoft.com/industry/government/solutions/cofee/default.aspx

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