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DHS: Expect your computer to be seized without suspicion

Posted By admin On August 30, 2009 @ 1:11 pm In Police State | Comments Disabled

Betanews
August 30, 2009

[efoods]

In what was presented to the public this week as a clarification of its privacy policy, the US Dept. of Homeland Security published a paper referring to new guidelines for its immigration and customs agents regarding how they may conduct border searches of travelers’ computers and electronic media. Clarifying the existing law, both sets of guidelines reiterated the department’s policy created during the previous administration: Agents may seize, detain, and/or retain individuals’ PCs and media without having reason to suspect that those people or those machines and devices are connected with a crime.

“ICE [Immigration and Customs Enforcement] Special Agents acting under border search authority may search, detain, seize, retain, and share electronic devices, or information contained therein, with or without individualized suspicion, consistent with the guidelines and applicable laws set forth herein,” states the new policy for immigration authorities published last August 18 (PDF available here). “Assistance to complete a border search may be sought from other Federal agencies and non-Federal entities, on a case by case basis, as appropriate.”

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