A federal court on Tuesday upheld a Homeland Security Department policy that allows authorities at border checkpoints to search laptops and other electronic devices belonging to U.S. citizens and foreigners.
A graduate student and several civil liberties groups in 2010 sued the government to stop a 2009 DHS directive authorizing the inspection of any electronic devices travelers carry across an international border into the United States. Pascal Abidor, a 26-year-old student at the McGill University Institute of Islamic Studies in Montreal, alleged authorities searched his laptop for five hours, viewing at least one document related to his dissertation. He was then ordered to write down his password and hand over the device. Abidor’s laptop and external drive were returned to him 11 days later, after, according to Abidor, they had been physically opened and various files on the laptop and external drive had been viewed… Read more.