Wednesday, February 15, 2017
I’m trying to figure out what to tell my International students.
What Are Your Rights if Border Agents Want to Search Your Phone?
… American border agents have the legal authority to conduct searches at the United States border that a police officer on the street wouldn’t. Laws created that allow agents to search bags without a judge’s approval, for purposes of immigration or security compliance, have been extended to digital devices.
… Can agents force you to unlock your phone or laptop?
No. But they can ask you to comply voluntarily and make the experience rather uncomfortable if you resist. Travelers must decide how much trouble they’re willing to put up with.
You may end up losing your device, since agents could seize the device for weeks before it is returned. They could also copy the data. (That data must be destroyed “as expeditiously as possible” if it is not valuable, according to Homeland Security policy.)
… Can agents force you to turn over social media passwords?
No. But those who unlock their phones are most likely giving agents full access to their social media accounts, even if they don’t tell them the passwords.
(Related). “Papers, fingerprints, retina and iris scans, blood sample and full DNA workup please, Comrade Citizen.”
Biometric Checkpoints in Trump’s America
President Donald Trump’s controversial travel ban called for, among other things, the speedy completion of a “biometric entry-exit tracking system” for all travelers to the United States.
If this sounds familiar, it’s because the idea has been debated in Washington for more than a decade. The implementation of such a system was one of the recommendations from the sprawling document known as the 9/11 Report, published 13 years ago by the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States.
In fact, members of Congress mandated the creation of an enhanced entry-exit database before the attacks of 2001, as part of immigration reform in 1996. After the September 11 attacks, Congress set a 2006 deadline for the implementation the system, and specified that agencies government-wide—not just “scattered units at Homeland Security and the State Department”— should be able to access it. When the federal government missed that deadline, Congress issued a new target for 2009.
… Keeping track of foreigners who are coming and going, the thinking goes, could prevent a terrorist attack from being carried out in the United States by non-citizens overstaying their visas. The “large majority of jihadist terrorists in the United States,” however, have been American citizens or legal residents, according to a terrorism-tracking project by the think tank New America. “Every jihadist who conducted a lethal attack inside the United States since 9/11 was a citizen or legal resident,” according to New America’s research.
I’m not sure I get this at all. Is there an international body that enforces the Geneva Conventions? Would this apply only during wars or do we need new definitions of “armed” conflict? Did any company in any country at war ever declare itself “neutral” and refuse to contribute to the war effort?
'Digital Geneva Convention' needed to deter nation-state hacking: Microsoft president
Microsoft President Brad Smith on Tuesday pressed the world's governments to form an international body to protect civilians from state-sponsored hacking, saying recent high-profile attacks showed a need for global norms to police government activity in cyberspace.
Countries need to develop and abide by global rules for cyber attacks similar to those established for armed conflict at the 1949 Geneva Convention that followed World War Two, Smith said. Technology companies, he added, need to preserve trust and stability online by pledging neutrality in cyber conflict.
Interesting. Isn’t there some old law about record retention?
Trump staffers using app that deletes their messages: report
Trump administration staffers are reportedly communicating by using an encrypted messaging app that erases messages shortly after they have been received.
The Washington Post reported on Tuesday that officials were using the app, called Confide, to avoid being caught talking to the media, as President Trump moves to crack down on leaks.
The Post report followed a report from Axios last week that reported Confide had become a favorite app for Republican staffers.
… The reports raise questions though about the possible violation of federal records keeping laws that require certain government employees to use their official email address for communications. [Thought so. Bob]
“The whole f---ing campaign was about Hillary's emails and now Trump's team is violating the Presidential Records Act by using Confide,” tweeted former Obama staffer Tommy Vietor.
Am I missing the clues? I read this as, ‘our earlier guesses were wrong.’
New clues into how FBI cracked the iPhone
The FBI has released highly redacted contract solicitation documents it sent to companies when trying to crack the iPhone of Syed Farook, one of the shooters in the San Bernardino terrorist attack in December 2015.
… However, both Thompson and Locaria say that formatting within the documents released last week by the FBI suggests that the bureau went to a company that is not already a government contractor. Cellebrite has been a government contractor for several years.
… "It's odd they're redacting requirements that don't identify the contractor specifically," he said.
“There are several clauses that only require offerors to make certain representations,” such as certifying that they have an affirmative action plan in place. “The fact they redact them may indicate that they are not in compliance with these traditional government contract requirements,” he added.