New reports of TSA searching computers and cellphones for domestic flights
Despite being roundly hated by the traveling public, the TSA continues to trample upon anyone unfortunate enough to cross their path. Whether it is the physical searches that are sometimes tantamount to sex crimes, or forcing foreign travelers to take books, magazines and food out of their bags for inspection, there seems to be no end in sight for how far they are willing step.
Naturally, tyrants don’t know the definition of limits, so we are seeing the TSA embark on a new level of their invasion. Sadly, a portion of the American public still believes that being an American citizen will protect them from having to encounter the security measures that are “necessary” to protect their freedom from the never-ending threat of an imminent terror attack by “the others.” Unfortunately, history shows that when mistreatment is permitted for those others, it will inevitably show up on your doorstep as well.
Activist Post and others previously have reported about the increase in electronic device searches for flights entering or leaving the United States. After a recent Freedom of Information Request, it was revealed that thousands of travelers per month have been subjected to these warrantless requests for personal information. Of that number, 80% are estimated to be foreigners, which still leaves a troubling number of American citizens who had their Constitution suspended.
Now, however, an exclusive report from the Guardian seems to indicate that even the pretense of preventing a foreign terror attack is being done away with as internal U.S. flight travelers are reporting the same warrantless requests to inspect their digital devices. These findings have spurred the ACLU of Northern California to file a new lawsuit against the TSA:
“We’ve received reports of passengers on purely domestic flights having their phones and laptops searched, and the takeaway is that TSA has been taking these items from people without providing any reason why,” the staff attorney Vasudha Talla told the Guardian. “The search of an electronic device has the potential to be highly invasive and cover the most personal details about a person.”
A TSA spokesman, Matt Leas, declined to comment on the lawsuit but said: “TSA does not search the contents of electronic devices.”
While admittedly, the complaints thus far are limited to “a handful of cases,” the stories that have been released so far seem to match what his known to have happened to international travelers.
One woman who shared her story with the ACLU told the Guardian that in the last year, she had twice had her electronics searched while flying within California. The 64-year-old, who works in the not-for-profit sector and requested anonymity for fear that she could face further scrutiny from TSA, said that on one occasion last year, TSA agents pulled her aside to pat her down multiple times and eventually asked to see both her iPhones – a work and personal one.
The agents did not ask her to unlock the phones, but took them for at least 10 minutes out of her view, she said, adding that she quickly became distraught.
“I no longer had my phones, so there was no one I could contact,” she said, adding, “It just feels like an invasion of privacy, especially when they are not telling you what the problem is.”
The woman said on a recent trip, the TSA also briefly took her laptop, which was password protected.
“If somebody is suspecting you of doing something wrong or some kind of crime, you should be told what it is. You should be able to defend yourself,” she added.
Given the fact that both the TSA and the ever-expanding policies for border searches to this point already have been called unconstitutional and are affecting people in greater numbers, it would be unwise to outright dismiss these latest claims. Combined with TSA secrecy and various new high-tech initiatives, including biometric scans, and the slope is getting more treacherous by the day.
In 2015, CBP conducted 5,000 searches of electronic devices in airports – a number that increased to 30,000 searches last year, the ACLU noted.
In October 2017, the TSA announced it would be heightening screening procedures of domestic passengers’ devices, including tablets and e-readers, but it has not released any policies or procedures governing these searches, the ACLU said.
This latest development would be concerning enough were it contained to air travel. However, as Derrick Broze recently reported, the TSA is now rolling out its activities in major train stations, leaving very few people immune from their expanding violations.
I will leave readers with some sound advice from the foremost expert on Technocracy, Patrick M. Wood:
The Technocrats at the TSA don’t care one iota about the 4th Amendment which states, “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.” What is unclear about this? If you are challenged, simply tell them ‘No’ and let them arrest you – then charge them with false imprisonment and violation of your Constitutionally guaranteed rights.
Without establishing a line in the sand, it appears that the TSA will continue to expand its violations of both body and mind.