US & EU Not Banning Laptops On Planes... Yet

from the stay-tuned dept

Last week there were reports claiming that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) was just about ready to ban any laptops from being in the passenger cabin on any flights between the EU and the US. As we pointed out this made no sense, even if there were credible reports of terrorists turning laptops into bombs (as the rumor goes). The plan was supposedly set to go into effect last Thursday, but on that day DHS said it hadn't made a final decision yet. Of course, apparently some over eager airline employees had official signs printed up claiming the ban was already in place (leading to later apologies).

Apparently, the decision not to implement the ban came because EU officials were not thrilled with the idea and wanted to discuss -- leading to a series of meetings. Of course, that also allowed time for the airline industry to snap to attention and announce that such a ban might cost travelers around $1 billion. Admittedly, there may be some dubious math involved... but it's fairly obvious that such a plan would lead to all sorts of problems for travelers -- from general lost productivity, to delays and confusion around checking the laptops, to broken, lost or stolen computers and more.

At least for now, we can breathe a sigh of relief that the EU/US meetings have ended without a plan to ban laptops on planes... though such a plan could always pop out again in the near future (and, it will almost certainly happen if there is an airplane bombing). And, of course, there's still the ominous "other measures" still being considered:

US and EU officials have decided against a ban on laptops and tablets in cabin baggage on flights from Europe.

But after a four-hour meeting in Brussels to discuss the threats to aviation security, officials said other measures were still being considered.

Air travel security theater continues to be the worst security theater.

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Filed Under: bans, dhs, eu, flights, laptops, security theater, us


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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 25 May 2017 @ 4:14pm

    There was a mistake. I fixed it. "All other personal electronic devices will be required to be hacked."

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