EFF and security experts to Congress: We need hearings on Customs laptop seizures and snooping

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10 Responses to “EFF and security experts to Congress: We need hearings on Customs laptop seizures and snooping”

  1. Foolster41 says:

    well, better than just disclosing the methods and procedure would be to reform the DHS/Border Control to NOT preform illegal search and seizers from American Citizens in the first place. This is a good first step, but what we need is precedent to have our 4th amendment rights not stop at the border.

  2. Agent 86 says:

    Nope, right thread (unless you posted that comment in the wrong thread, in which case hilarity would ensue).

  3. Danny O'Brien says:

    Jeff –

    Cases in the past have decided you no expectation of privacy in data shared with a third party (such as an online storage site), so unless you’re encrypting it with a key that your OSP doesn’t know, the courts have decided that you do not have any constitutional rights to have that data protected from government access (you have a little bit of statutory protection in a few cases, like recent stored emails, but not much).

  4. mkultra says:

    See, I always figured that it made sense to run an encrypted virtual machine for any sensitive data, with trivial data left lying all over the place on the machine.

    I doubt that the individuals involved would be technically skilled enough to be able to tell the difference between a 4.2gb ripped movie and a 4.2gb encrypted virtual machine. Especially if the file names were deceptive.

    “The movie isn’t playing? dang… must have gotten corrupted…”

    For smaller virtual disks, the encrypted file could be given a semi-random name and dumped into a folder of web cache files. Good luck sorting that out.

    Of course, if you’re really concerned, just keep all of your sensitive data on a SD/HD card that’s inserted into your digital camera. I doubt they pull them out and check them for non-photographic data.

  5. mkultra says:

    whoops, i posted that comment in the wrong thread. my bad.

  6. strathmeyer says:

    Aren’t we all hiding our super secret files somewhere online, yet?

  7. Ari B. says:

    You mean, at some point I might not need to securely delete most of the files from my laptop, then encrypt it using filevault before I travel, then restore everything from a backup when I get back? Amazing!

  8. Antinous says:

    And for those who have issue with it, don’t carry sensitive data around with you.

    But the point is that someone other than you could spill your info. Your bank, your insurance company, your landlord all have your personal info. You can control yourself, but you can’t control them. Your insurer doesn’t care about protecting your from exposure.

  9. sleze says:

    TrueCrypt is your friend. And the friend of ellusive pedophiles.

  10. Jeff says:

    For most people it won’t matter. And for those who have issue with it, don’t carry sensitive data around with you. Use your device to access it on line. That may not alway be possible (can’t connect to the net), but then that’s the price to be paid for keeping all your secrects safe and sound. Unless the Feds really want what you’ve got, in which case you better make sure your data is kept in an off-shore, Fed-proof facility that you can trust. And if the data suddenly goes missing, the facility where it was held might just get infected with a very nasty bug.

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