Visiting Australia? Make Sure You Tell The Customs Officials About The Porn On Your Hard Drive

from the perhaps-I'll-visit-new-zealand-instead... dept

We've discussed, a few times, the issues with border patrol/customs officials in the US searching laptops at the border. The reason it doesn't make much sense is that the purpose of border patrol is to make sure nothing bad gets into a country, but the content on your laptop can easily get into the country via the internet, rather than at the border. And even bigger concern, of course, is that people store everything on their laptops. If you're packing your suitcase for a trip somewhere, you pack only the things you want to take. Everything you bring is effectively "opt-in." However, on your laptop, you already have everything. If anything, you might (though I doubt many people do) delete some stuff to avoid having it searched. In other words, unlike your suitcase, the data on your laptop is more of an "opt-out" situation.

Well, it appears that down in Australia, they've taken border laptop concerns to a new and ridiculous level. Slashdot points us to claims for Australian officials that travelers entering Australia should have to declare all porn on their laptops. After some public outcry, that original claim was downgraded to "all illegal porn," but as some people are still pointing out, it's not at all clear what constitutes "illegal porn" in Australia, and it's a violation of privacy to demand that travelers reveal their laptop porn. Again, I'm at a loss as to how this actually helps with anything. It's not like having people declare it at the border will do anything to stop "illegal" porn. It just seems like an easy way to have something else to hold over people.

Filed Under: australia, border patrol, customs, porn, tourism


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  1. identicon
    darryl, 21 Oct 2010 @ 9:27am

    Hi Mike guard dog.. I dont have to make anything up, Mike does that for me.

    Oh I dont have to randomly make anything up to get mad at Mike, Mike is able to provide all the illinformed, unfounded, stupid, untrue and lazy 'reporting' of unfounded and unsupported claims.

    Mike, himself if the joke, its just a matter of calling him out on his FUD, and ignoring you guard dogs that will jump to his aid whenever you feel his threatened.

    For you Mike can say nothing wrong, and you agree with absolutely everthing, blindly, without thinking for a second that he may have other reasons for his lazy methods.

    After all, he's doing all he can to extract money from you 'punters'.

    And what did I make up at all ? Mike is often claiming US superiority, and saying that the US way is the ONLY way, but the US way is also broken.

    He's a hypocrite, who hides behine things like the constitution to try to prove his purile point, which seems to be a message of patents and copyright in any form are bad, and that his system is somehow different and better than what the rest of the planet has been using for all time.

    Mike makes amazing claims, with no evidense that any of it is true, or not just a figment of Mikes imagination..

    But whatever he says, you'll back him all the way.

    I like to check facts and when I do, I see Mike is full of it..

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