The only motivation I can imagine is: They want these devices in checked luggage because checked luggage can be inspected without recourse by customs, and without an on-site confrontation. With care, it can be done without even notifying the people who are being checked.
And given the pushback on social media credential disclosure and the reveal that the CIA (and presumably FBI and other agencies) have physical access exploits (probably via USB or DisplayPort) for most of these devices, this seems like a move who's only logical motivation could be easier digital inspection.
Remember, it's the position of the TSA and CBP that non-citizens don't have rights of any kind until they're allowed through customs, and by simply inspecting devices they're interested in quickly and without publicity or confrontation they will certainly be more effective at it.
I'm going to start putting a USB nuke stick in my luggage in an envelope. Just for fun. Maybe I'll label the envelope something nonsensical like "12-16" just to make sure people know it's useless. And in case I (or someone investigating my luggage) needs to plug something into a USB slot.
It seems like we're getting closer and closer to being in a situation where people who can should avoid going to the US at all, and make their reasoning known. Ie, refuse to give talks, attend conferences, etc. in the US.
[10min audio] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MDYMw1p8s9M
Ex: "what shops are you planning to go to". It's fine to answer "I don't know yet". They're just testing behaviour. If you start being defensive or aggressive, pretend to know their jobs better than they, etc, it's suspicious. Although yes, in general, the US agents are really bad at doing behaviour testing.
Anecdotal: Last year, I crossed the border a few times by car, visiting a friend I met on Tinder. I completely got away with it, giving honest answers at the border. Recently met someone else (a girl) who was stopped and accused of prostitution for doing the exact same thing. :/
You may not understand quite how much most Americans hate CBP. I use "hate" here deliberately. It represents the worst part of our government and a codification of our racist laws and culture even at the best of times.
They find a way to weaponize ignorance and shame people who are different at every turn. They have tackled people and held them at gunpoint for LED shirts, they've publicly shamed women for having vibrators in their luggage, they've delayed flights because people speak Tolkien's elvish leaving comicon.
And their definition of sincere risk? Brown people or people who are different. They can detain Americans and non-Americans alike without due process and stories report they do just to make a point.
And the worst part? They are bad at their jobs. The FBI is a problematic institution as well, but at least they can point to data that suggests they're doing things here and there to actually foil people who genuinely want to cause domestic problems.
Even conservative Americans hate the TSA and CBP face to face. We're all scared of them, because we know they're stupid and bad at their jobs but terribly powerful.
No, because you didn't do anything wrong.
Border crossing is not a crime, last I checked, despite the best efforts of some to make it feel that way.
Contrast that to this (6min): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tV-wgZBGfCo
None of those stories are that important in and of themselves, it's the whole normalized atmosphere of fear, guilt and almost agony that I don't understand.
Of course there is going to be someone who reacts badly, but you would think that they have professionals at the border that know this, from what I've seen when disembarking in London there are people who know how to handle these things. I've seen the same situation being descalated in 10 seconds.
I'm guessing there is little pay and pride to be had for a border guard in the US, so little incentive for being anything else than a git.
However, Canada can be just as bad. Bottom line: know the law, be polite/calm, travel light, be honest but keep answers at a minimum. Unfortunately, since I travel often for business, that means I've spent way too much time at social events exchanging about travel tips, rather than actual productive conversation. It's also silly that we're adding barriers instead of removing them. What a waste :(
I just visited some of my friends in Japan, many of whom wanted to visit me in the US once their children got a bit older, and they all said they are straight up frightened of simply trying to enter the US. These are some of the most upstanding people you can meet with jobs like being teachers, government employees, etc. They are the last people who should be afraid of being found as suspicious persons, yet the reality is that based on what they see in the news, I can't blame them.
Popular culture likes to portray Japan as a weird outlier country- but that's only if you compare it to the US. If you include the aforementioned European countries in the comparison, the US is the weird country.
I have bit heard anything of the like in Japan, but as you say it could be because they don't have the same measures/report rate we have, or that I don't check Japanese statistics as much.
You may notice is less and less diversity, but it's already pretty low, and we're often not very good at noticing that.
When was the last time your laptop's USB controllers had a firmware upgrade for security hardening?
Now with airlines actually removing in flight entertainment, flying from the Middle East to New York can be quite a long trip: no laptop to watch a movie, no screen in front of you.
I guess the US will stop banning as soon as one of these policy-makers is on the same flight as a few bored kids ;-)
For me already well past that point, no way would I travel to the US for any reason, work or pleasure.
I'm from the UK and I'm seriously contemplating getting out of here while the going is good as well.
Frankly, it seems the US policing practices have been looking more and more USSR like. And i dont just mean since trump arrived to power.
how is that going to protect the US? [...] perpetrators
will not transport any digital devices with incriminating
1. Bad guys with imperfect opsec (I see in your unallocated space there's a deleted TAILS ISO... onto a watchlist with you!)
2. Friends and relatives of bad guys (I see your nephew e-mailed you holiday photos from cybercafes near two different suspected terrorist training camps... onto a watchlist with him!) a bit like social media companies' 'shadow profiles'
3. Non-terrorist targets, like good old corporate espionage and political blackmail (Oh, you're a journalist/oil industry exec/prostitute? Let me just take a copy of your contacts, records and reports)
I love the idea but I can't help but think that even with a completely airtight reason to be traveling with that item (e.g. you're a security researcher) you would be accused of terrorism. Somehow.
Unfortunately, Liberals have weakened the 2nd Amendment to mean "only if you have a good reason", and weakened the 1st Amendment to mean "as long as you don't offend someone", while Conservatives have weakened the 4th amendment to mean "we suspected it without good cause and it turns out we were right which made the whole search ok."
I think if we stop weakening the ammendments we'll stop seeing violations of our basic civil liberties. But when California passes laws that regulate firearms you can wrap a thumb around (yes, this is a real thing), and Arizona passes a law that allows police to stop you if they suspect you're an illegal immigrant, we'll be in a slow spiral with decreasing rights.
The desire to strengthen old laws is interesting. Why is it that they seem better than the laws we can create today, given our advancements in education and ethics? Pining for the past due to the absence of 'something better'. Why does that 'something better' not exist?
Rights are granted with the intent to increase power/wealth for those who grant rights. Based on results, those in power no longer believe that granting rights to commoners is in their best interest.
Average citizens have less impact on that now. The constitution and amendments come from a time when they applied to fewer, more powerful people. The erosion of those rights is to be expected unless you're living in an altruistic utopia.
Highly recommend you watch CGP Grey's Rules for Rulers for another perspective.
And your nuke device might be worthless if they install a firmware exploit that will work later.
They might not be able to force you but it seems that they can lock you up indefinitely for contempt of court in the US and for they definitely can give you five years in the UK because it is a specific offence there under RIPA.
See https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=13919115 and https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=6248902.
I don't see how that will be fun since the only way you would find out if "it worked" would be by getting pulled from your flight and detained.
Doesn't take a large stretch of the imagination for a CBP official to declare that a "detonation device". Now you're really screwed.
Arrive in country then restore backup remotely.
What if I actually bought a new cheap phone because I'm afraid of getting robbed abroad, and even tell the agent?
I ask because I would think that being afraid of losing your expensive phone on a leisure trip is common enough and harmless enough (and totally real reason) that it wouldn't provoke or trigger an agent.
Or am I being delusional?
Yes. Remember, they don't need proof of anything. You're not on trial. It's largely up to the judgment of the individual officer whether or not someone can enter the US as a visitor.
If they ask you why there's nothing on your phone, you'd better be able to convince them that it's for some other reason than "I don't want you to see it". Can you do that? Well, it depends on how persuasive you are and whether the officer is in a good mood that day.
I mean, I've been buying burner phones when crossing to the US since several years ago, just because I do am afraid of getting mugged and losing everything while traveling, and since every trip to the US has been for vacation, I really didn't need anything on my phone other than emergency contacts (insurance, etc) and my reservation numbers for whatever I was going to visit.
So hopefully if I ever travel to the US again, and they want to check my phone, I hope they really believe me when I Tell them the truth... but like you said, it will depend on the judgment of the agent so I guess I'm screwed anyways if they want me to be so.
This is just... wow.
CBP officers working in secondary inspection to this all day, every day, they know what they're looking for, they will lie to you if necessary and chances are that they have heard the same explanations many times already. Secondary inspection is not a pleasant experience at all and you don't want to make it worse by trying to outsmart people who do this for a living.
However I think my case still applies in the sense that I would expect a lot of people to also buy a burner phone for a vacation trip just as a way to avoid loss in the event of a robbery, instead of as a way to try to outsmart border agents, so I would hope I would not be alone in giving them this reason as to why my phone is clean.
You raise a good argument though. If I'm already in secondary inspection I guess anything you give them or fail to give them will in any case be used against me, basically depending on the mood of the agent at that time.
I guess an interesting statistic to know (not that government would publish it willingly...) would be how many people that went through secondary inspection where denied access and how many of them were not.
Out of the 375 million passengers processed in FY 2014, 34 million was referred to secondary inspection and about 223,000 was found inadmissible. Keep in mind that these numbers also include US citizens who cannot be found inadmissible, but could be referred to secondary inspection for other reasons.
So ~10% get secondary inspection, and of those ~0.65% where found inadmissible (non-citizen as you point out).
Not sure how to feel about it. On the one hand 10% sounds like "not so bad" in that it's actually a minority getting secondary inspections.
On the other hand... if I'm waiting for border agents to let me through and 1 in 10 will get secondary inspections, which by the looks of it would include access to your accounts and such, it sounds like a terribly high percentage.
Using a parcel-handling service, gov't or private, along with some tamper-indication of the package interior seems much safer, though not perfect by any means.
(HN thread: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=13702981)
Specifically, this part:
“A month later, André attempted to fly to New Orleans again. This time, he brought what he thought was ample proof that he was not a sex worker: letters from his employer, pay stubs, bank statements, a lease agreement and phone contracts to prove he intended to return to Canada.
When he went through secondary inspection at Vancouver airport, US Customs officers didn’t even need to ask for his passwords — they were saved in their own system. But André had wiped his phone of sex apps, browser history and messages, thinking that would dispel any suggestion he was looking for sex work. Instead, the border officers took that as suspicious.
“They went through my computer. They were looking through Word documents,” André says. “I had nude photos of myself on my phone, and they were questioning who this person was. It was really humiliating and embarrassing.”
“They said, ‘Next time you come through, don’t have a cleared phone,’ and that was it. I wasn’t let through. He said I’m a suspected escort. You can’t really argue with them because you’re trapped,” he says.”
He wasn’t necessarily declined solely because he wiped the phone (they already suspected him due to the previous encounter), but they made it pretty clear they don’t like it since they considered that reason enough to not let him through a second time despite all the supporting paperwork.
Have you ever used hotel wifi?
Give me a break.
What am I to do? Networks simply aren't fast enough to deal with my data sizes.
Label it "Very Bad USB" and put a bunch of noise in there. When you get detained tell them that you forgot the second part, "corrupts data"
Do you actually have one? I searched for a bit but it doesn't seem like they're sold.
My favorite is the USB-C one, because the USB-C spec supports 100W...
After huge demand, the USB Kill V3.0 comes in an anonymous version.
No branding - No logos - Generic Case. The anonymous version is perfect for penetration testers that require discretion.
There's no way this thing would be used in a pentest. It destroys computers. Generally pentesters try not to destroy the client's property.
Amusing way to frame it, though.
It does however force business travelers to rethink flying Emirates, Etihad, etc and fly United, etc instead. I'll be interested to see if these airlines sue.
A half gallon of petrol sitting inside your fake laptop in the hold is no biggie. A half gallon of petrol in the cabin is a whole different ballgame.
It's also beyond bizarre that the US trusts Abu Dhabi's security enough to locate its only Middle Eastern Customs/Immigration preclearance facility, but not enough to let passengers who have gone through security bring tablets...
In 2016, the United airplane I was in still did not have a seatback screen and they expected all 200+ passengers to connect to the wifi to try to get in-flight entertainment. Of course no one got on. So all of us were left craning our necks trying to catch a glimpse of whatever was on the CRT in the aisle.
Meanwhile, Turkish Airlines has a touchscreen interface with beautifully done transitions and an amazing selection of movies and music. I remember seeing Radiohead's Kid A on there, along with the Blade Runner soundtrack.
Next month, I'm flying to Berlin via Turkish even though it will take 4 more hours because the price and comfort are worth it. Only problem is, this electronics ban may compromise my electronics.
(And yes, I'm aware of early adopter pitfalls and government subsidies for airlines, but United has no qualms treating non-status passengers like trash.)
This is a deliberate decision that airlines are starting to make. If most passengers are bringing a wifi-capable device (ipad, phone, etc), then why go to the extra expense (and weight) to support seat-back screens?
Now, my main experience with this has been flying within the US where none of the newest planes have screens. Internationally, there may still be screens included in newer planes, but when screens = weight, and weight = $$$, it's not surprising that they are getting removed. Moreover, screens = depth, which when removed can make room for more rows, which means more money.
If this electronics ban takes hold though, I'd expect for there to be a big rethink about this.
I'll gladly let the airline shove more seats in by thinning them out, than by reducing my leg room any further.
So United saved costs by not retrofitting their airplanes with seatback screens and by offering shit wifi.
Of course Louis CK would say: https://youtu.be/ZFsOUbZ0Lr0
Also their primary hub Istanbul Ataturk Airport (IST) was attacked in 2016, which left 45 people killed and more than 230 people injured.
I am not sure what criteria they use to issue this award, but they do not look safe enough to me to be on the 7th best position in the world.
I knew of the attack at Ataturk Airport and I'm fine with a layover there. I'd even change to a stopover to hang out in Istanbul again, but don't have the time this trip. If you can get over your fears and fly the two airlines, I'm sure you'll find Turkish to be a better experience than United.
This just depends which plane you get. They all have new and old planes, you can get unlucky on any airline.
The entertainment system on the seat backs was Linux in a reboot loop.
JAL/ANA have very new planes with cool entertainment systems, but they also fly their older planes on some routes with a bunch of stuff that looks like it's powered by VCR.
To your question: they probably don't for their major international flights.
(Plus, can confirm that the ME airlines are highly competitive. They're subsidized by their governments: http://www.economist.com/blogs/gulliver/2015/03/airline-subs... (thanks hueving)).
That's not true, at least not for Emirates and Etihad, which were the main airlines accused.
Delta and other US airlines did accuse them of violating the Open Skies agreement, yes. Which is quite hypocritical since Delta (like other US airlines) has also taken direct subsidies from the US government.
But, as Emirates showed in their subsequent lawsuit, their financial records prove that they have never taken government subsidies, despite Delta's accusations. Etihad did, but long before Open Skies was signed (1999).
This behavior isn't unusual; the Big Four are just using this as an easy way to smear their biggest competitors, while ignoring other airlines that have similar financial history (China Southern, etc.). But China Southern isn't (currently) drawing passengers away from the Big Four, whereas Emirates/Etihad/Qatar are.
The Gulf aiflines are more efficient than the US airlines because they exclusively serve one city - Emirates, for example, flies only flights to or from Dubai (with a couple of tiny exceptions). That makes it a lot easier to provide excellent service and cheap flights.
American doesn't fly to any Middle Eastern cities but they partner with both Etihad and Qatar, who do.
I wonder if including Kindles is more a jibe against Bezos. Perhaps this is a stretch.
Abu Dhabi security was far more stringent than anything I have been through in Europe, (and ironically Brussels, when I was in the Brussels airport in transit when it was attacked).
This is not correct Quatar has one as well.
I'm also unsure why you would find this "bizarre" as all of the Emirates are incredibly wealthy.
And the bizarreness is that they're simultaneously trusting them enough to handle immigration, but not trusting them enough to handle passenger screening.
> It's also beyond bizarre that the US trusts Abu Dhabi's security enough to locate its only Middle Eastern Customs/Immigration preclearance facility, but not enough to let passengers who have gone through security bring tablets...
It's a good question.
However, I don't see that as a vote of confidence in them since they are still permitting flights.
I think similar could be said of the TSA in the US - the DHS trust them enough to let passengers who have gone through security bring shampoo as carry on but not enough if those shampoo bottles are greater than 3.4 ounces, despite having gone through their security.
I think its less about a vote of confidence and more about absurdist theater.
This is not about DHS trusting TSA, since the specific part of DHS that makes that regulates that is...TSA.
Someone answers their cell phone mid-flight - BOOM! Down goes the plane, steep descent, passengers screaming, masks drop from the ceiling, until that phone call ends and the plane straightens up.
Blanket ban on electronics is the only way to stop this happening.
One time I was flying and someone had forgotten to turn off their phone until the plane was in the air and it interfered with the navigation systems and we landed in London instead of Paris. Very ocnfuisng.
That's an RF induced race condition. Someone may be using radiowaves next to your keyboard. Now imagine that happening to the auto pilot system.
I laughed more though at the comments to this - one person genuinely not sure if humor or not, and one guy, smart, that somehow managed to figure it out without a /s. Welcome to next generation of software engineers.
Let's say you saw a similar comment on HN describing why the Earth is flat. Would you have reacted the same way?
It is far less plausible that they could genuinely believe they have witnesses, first-hand, several instances of a passenger using a cellphone on a commercial flight and causing it to crash, plus instances of navigation and other failures caused by personal electronics.
The big problem with cellphones on planes is that they overwhelm the signalling networks on the ground - when the carrier tries to determine which cell is best suited to handle your call, it basically polls the neighbouring cells for the received signal strength from that particular phone. When you're on a plane, your phone is seen from an awful lot of cells.
Also, some systems (GSM, for instance) relies on your velocity compared to the base station not being too large to allocate you a slot in the time-multiplexed channels. Depending on the geometry of the cell network, you may not be able to connect at all when on a plane - but your phone may create all sorts of grief for the network operator.
Or, put another way - if there really was a non-zero probability that a working cellphone on a plane would cause trouble, the TSA would simply collect the phones during boarding and being caught with one would give you the full terrorist treatment.
Given the abundance of cellphones and the sloppiness of people, I think it is probably safe to say that no commercial flight has taken off without at least one active cell-phone aboard for the past twenty years or so.
And this is in a fiberglass airplane that's basically radio transparent. Now try it in an aluminum airplane at 30,000+ft. I doubt the cells can even hear your phone in the first place.
There's enough radio transparent openings in an aircraft fuselage for it to be a reasonably inefficient faraday cage - say, windows, for instance. (Or are those portholes on an aircraft, too?)
It would be non-trivial to determine the phone's altitude, but you could make a pretty good inference from the number and location of cells reporting that they 'see' it - and the velocity should be a no-brainer to figure out with a reasonable degree of accuracy. Hm.
Just a semi-educated guess. (I haven't looked at cellular systems since I was in university 15-20 years ago.)
Methinks you are probably right.
I don't want anyone to suffer, and definitely don't want anyone to die. I'm not calling for turning our backs on every idea to improve safety. Just don't apply this safety under the false premise that things are more dangerous than they were.
The whole thing was a much smaller scale than Syria, but still generated a "flood" of refugees: http://www.thejournal.ie/northern-refugees-ireland-state-pap...
The situation was very weird - a civil war within the UK, effectively, complete with troops on the street and armed checkpoints - but only in very specific areas. A quasi-democracy operated: Gerry Adams MP was permitted to be elected but not allowed to speak on television. Bobby Sands was elected while in prison.
Rightwing reporting of incidents did a lot to drive anti Irish sentiment, leading to forced confessions by innocent Irish people for terrorist attacks like in Bermingham and Guilford.
Political leaders who liked to use zero tolerance rhetoric like Margaret Thatcher did a lot to help the IRA recruitment cause.
It was different, but not completely different to what we see now in the US.
By coincidence onetime IRA commander Martin McGuinness died today, a man who's conversion to pursuit of political aims through diplomatic conciliation rather than hardline methods is one of the great examples of how the former works better to end conflicts.
Find an old source saying "Blimey, we hath hadd 200 of thee black cryme of murder thys annus!" and cross-reference it against recorded population at the time, and there's your homicide rate.
It's weird, for all this terminal rhetoric I read about the end of America I still drove to work this morning and still had faith in American values, not to mention a crazy belief that what's right will ultimately prevail in the face of great adversity. What's more, I feel uniquely empowered as an American to roll up my sleeves and create the America I want to see and believe is good for the rest of us, and I didn't even need Gandhi to teach me that one.
I guess I need a sandwich board instead, because what's the point? Are we merely South Canada now, waiting for an eventual invasion that will take our economic, military, scientific and cultural leadership away, leaving a skeleton of a sovereign state that barely made it out of puberty? What coffin do you think Trump is building? I'm about as disapproving of the current administration as you can get, but I've also studied just enough of the world to understand that things tend to endure, even when the situation looks most hopeless to all involved.
Look at the Big Bads that the British survived throughout their centuries of history. Sure, Pax Britannica and their colonial adventures around the world have come to a close, but I don't see any comments saying "the world won, Britain lost, might as well yield the Crown and just absorb into the EU." Nope: they still fight for what they believe to be good and properly British, including giving the finger to the rest of Europe when they feel it necessary. We should learn from that example, of those with the learned memory of an empire from which they descend, deflated by the world changing around it, yet avoiding the adoption of a fatalist nostalgia that impedes all progress and hope for the future.
If the British aren't a good example, look at the Germans who still live in the punchline of uncomfortable jokes. They're still here, still making some mean beer, and still a valuable member of the world. Not even a particularly misguided government pissing off the entire planet could get rid of a German ideal that lived in its citizens' hearts, and they had a God damned wall down the middle in the wake of that mess to constantly remind them of how hopeless it got.
We are due to be knocked down a couple more pegs than we already are. If you're of the mind to give up when that happens, then you can identify yourself as a member of the "winning" army. Saying UbL won and giving up makes him win. How do you not see that?
That doesn't mean Bin Laden won - history is not a game, the round didn't end yet. US can still recover - if it choses to.
But America in general didn't spend even a second considering this.
Like the comment I linked says - terrorist goal wasn't that you get patted down when traveling, or surrendering your privacy to the encroaching surveillance state. Those are goals of the US government, and here, the government is winning. The terrorists however, are definitely not.
I am aware some feel that erosion of civil liberties in response to terrorism has destroyed what they feel to be America. We are still having a conversation about those very flaws and I'm not blindfolded before a firing squad for having an unacceptable opinion, so I think the rumors of America's death are greatly exaggerated by those who benefit the most from her continued protections. Before terrorism, it was communism^. We grow out of things because eventually sanity wins out. It always does.
Do not take that to mean it's time to kick back. Quite the opposite: sanity wins because people choose to be sane en masse.
^ The trend line on irrational national fears is interesting. After terrorism should be nice.
I've been thinking about that, and trying to put my finger on when things changed, and I realized it's not the US that changed, it's the internet!
Every single complaint and little thing now has a wide wide audience. The good stuff does not however, since it's [relatively] boring.
Talk to some people 40+ and ask them when they thought things went downhill, then ask them when they started using social networks.
We were told the world had changed and that we had to fear the unknown. We have been a nation of frightened children ever since.
older, 22 Nov '63.
We still need to worry about that. We seemingly keep adding things to worry about, antibiotic resistance, climate change, big data, and not solving many. Hmm.
I remember being a kid in the 1980s and my dad explained why there were air raid sirens.
And then the wall fell and all was peaceful until around September 11. For some reason the regular Irish troubles never really registered.
It's really hard to understand how we went from tolerating MAD to freaking out about a handful of people with box cutters in only a decade. I guess people have really short memories.
... and while terrorist strikes do happen and nuclear war doesn't, the fear of terrorist strikes is much greater than the danger they represent.
It's sad to watch the country I was born in dying, but it's a lot safer doing so on the other side of the world.
Then someone had the idea to treat corporations as people and legalize bribery. Leadership sets the tone as they say in corporations, so what kind of tone do greedy politicians set?
Our upward progress was doomed to stall bigly thanks to that decision.
I see. You missed out on the Reagan years.
EDIT: Also, no airline that I know of will insure these items when checked in for more than $100 on international flights (please correct if I'm wrong). So if you can get them in at all, like the article says, they will be stolen.
This is incorrect, only spare batteries aren't allowed in checked baggage, computers are fine. From your second link :
> Lithium ion batteries installed in a personal electronic device can be transported as checked or carry on baggage. Lithium ion batteries not installed in a device (spares) must be in carry-on baggage and no more than two (2) spares between 100 and 160 watt hours are allowed.
Very, they are subsidized by their governments.
If you're someone who flies for work, there's no way you're going to take a flight where you can't use your laptop.
Done that, security check on one flight I was on at boarding forced all liquids to be emptied.
Get off one plane, go through security to the transit terminal.
Wander around, refill water bottles.
Buy some duty free, get it put in a cardboard box with a ziptie.
Go to gate, go through ticket check, some corridors to gate lounge.
Get cardboard box confiscated and put in a pile of similar looking cardboard boxes.
Asked to empty water bottle... where? You can't turn around. Chug a litre of water.
Have bags 'checked', go into lounge, refill water bottle again.
Pee three times.
Still better than flying through any US airport tho.
>The official said the move is partly based on intelligence that they believe indicates Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula is close to being able to hide explosives with little or no metal content in electronic devices in order to target commercial aircraft.
It's a particular concern at these airports because of screening issues and the possibility of terrorists infiltrating authorized airport personnel, the official said. Flight and cabin crews are not covered by these new restrictions.
In February 2016, a bomb hidden inside a laptop detonated aboard a Daallo Airlines flight out of Mogadishu, Somalia. The bomber was killed and a hole was blown in the side of the fuselage. The aircraft landed safely.
I was training getting into R/C helicopters. No, not the toys they sell at the mall but the more sophisticated models flown by R/C pilots. Needless to say, they are not easy to fly. Even with twenty years experience flying R/C airplanes of all kinds I had to start from scratch.
R/C heli's can be very expensive to crash. A set of carbon fiber rotors and related mechanics will easily set you back well of $200. I was intent on learning without crashing. How? Use an R/C flight simulator and log hundreds of hours before flying the real thing.
I was flying back and forth to Europe a bunch during that time. It was only logical to take my flight simulator with me and practice during the long flight. That meant my laptop along with a special full size R/C controller with a USB cord instead of the antenna.
This rig always called attention to itself and was a pretty good conversation starter. I always had to explain what it was while going through security. On two flight the pilot came over to my seat to check out what I was doing. In both cases they asked to see if they could fly the simulated heli. And, sorry to say, in both cases they failed miserably. It was a great way to get 16+ hours of practice.
Not sure I could do that today.
There's something uniquely geeky about flying in a flight simulator while flying on a real plane. Like I said, good conversation starter.
Which means, in turn, that I'm less likely to visit. Why take a 20-hour flight and subject myself to "extreme vetting"?
More advanced versions would involve modifying the BIOS to add a SMM-mode hook. That way the malware runs completely outside the view of the OS. Alternatively, any device with DMA access could have its firmware altered to read sensitive information from memory.
Physical security is an unsolved problem.
Mine isn't - I have GRUB installed to my BIOS chip, and I decrypt the single encrypted partition from there.
>More advanced versions would involve modifying the BIOS to add a SMM-mode hook.
That one could still get me though, yeah.
And/or they might think Netherlands and France is just as attractive for the terrorists as the US, i.e. the terrorists won’t bother taking that second flight.
BTW, I think Russia should be the 9-th country on that list, as they have long history of sponsoring terrorism.
Russians ordered bombings in Warsaw, Poland in 1920-s.
Shipped weaponry to Irish Republican Army and Palestine in 70-s. Speaking about Palestine, some say Russians have invented plane hijacking as a terrorist tactic: http://web.archive.org/web/20130102051626/http://www.nationa...
Killed many political opponents abroad, Alexander Litvinenko in UK, Sulim Yamadaev in UAE, Stepan Bandera in Germany.
If you want more, read books and articles by Stanislav Lunev, Ion Mihai Pacepa, Viktor Suvorov. Those are high-ranking KGB officers who surrendered and were cooperative. Alexander Litvinenko also published stuff about state-sponsored terrorism in modern Russia, but he concentrated on domestic not international.
At the rate we are going, it's not going to be long before you will not be allowed to bring any carry on luggage at all when flying from certain airports. Maybe everyone should fly naked. Who knows, someone might have plastic explosives sewn into their clothes. Wait, what if someone swallows the explosives? Maybe everyone should be forced to take an emetic and get a colonoscopy before flying.
If there's a threat this only introduces a minor inconvenience to those looking to carry out an attack. Is getting a connecting flight in some country like Germany going to be hard?
If they allow phones at all, then the threat cannot be an issue of a passenger sending a command out of one of these. The threat has to be the device itself.
Now, a standard issue iPad is no threat, so we're talking about a customized device made to look like on.
Except, if terrorists are going to the trouble to do this, they can just as easily put whatever bad thing they want to put into the case of an insulin pump, and bypass the ban.
This. Is. Bullshit.
Though, I'm open to the alternative theory that having people place their laptops in checked luggage gives them greater opportunity to do targeted surveillance without their target being aware.
There's commercially available penetrating X-ray human body security scanners, but afaict those just have been used in prisons, not in airports (yet!).
Since then it has been repurposed for extreme cases like unconscious car crash victims in order to determine the extent of injuries. Or so I learned in a medical imaging elective.
The technology behind it is really cool! By using temporal separation for the different parts of the image they reduce scattering blur, allowing them to use a much lower dose to get the same image quality.
Also you're very wrong. You can defeat a millimeter scan just by placing the contraband between your palms while your hands are clasped above your head.
I think the person at the monitor wants to look at my weiner.
Since then, I always transit through Heathrow. It's a logistical nightmare with all those buses, but they've never coerced me to go through a scanner. Those biometric checkpoints, on the other hand...
[Note: This was with Dutch staff for British Airways; not sure if that's relevant.]
From Heathrow's security FAQ page (http://www.heathrow.com/more/help-with-this-website/faqs/sec...):
The only alternative that can be offered to a scanner is a private search which allows for a more extensive hand-search than usual. Passengers will be escorted to a different location in the airport from the main search area (eg a private search room). The private search may involve the loosening and/or removal of clothing. A person undergoing a private search may ask to be accompanied by a witness.
This alternative screening method will take significantly more time than passing through a security scanner.
The point is their technology is terrible and they are easy to defeat, as has been proven many many times.
They are security theater and they were only put in place because the guy in charge of what scanners were allowed at US airports happened to have a financial interest in the company that made the millimeter wave scanner.
Yup. I have been to many airports in Africa and SE Asia that have only a metal detector, manned by someone who barely cares enough to stand there, and no one has successfully committed an act of terrorism (a la 9/11) with a plane due to it.
Also when I was traveling in Japan, they had machines that could scan the contents of your water bottle so you didn't have to empty it or throw it away while going through security.
I'm mildly convinced other countries don't have this because the beverage industry can sell more water/soda you're forced to throw it away when you go through security.
I've also stopped arguing about going through the machines. I know they do nothing, but it's not worth the hassle security employees give you to opt out. Just stand there, knowing it's pointless, and move on.
Every major U.S. airport I've been to in the past 5 years has had ample bottle filling stations.
I think Israel is special, because they use behavioural profiling on you as well.
I've been through Frankfurt on an inter-EU flight, and we were put into the priority lane because things were quiet. The priority lane only had (has?) a metal detector, no body scanner.
So if the body scanners were really about security, why would they have a lane that allows you to bypass them completely?
I once flew from Frankfurt to Barcelona without anyone checking my passport (I am not European but have a valid residence permit for an EU country). Did online checkin and printed my boarding pass. No checked luggage, and automated boarding pass scanners at the gate. So yeah, really thorough...
I am aware. My point wasn't clear. I wasn't surprised I was not asked for my passport, however I was surprised I was able to fly from Germany to Spain without anyone verifying I was the person my boarding pass said I was.
I could have given my ticket to a friend and they would have been able to fly under my name, because at no point did anyone ask for government ID to confirm I was the same person as my boarding pass.
I value the freedom of movement Europeans have very highly, but it just goes to show how dead easy it is for someone to travel undetected (e.g. have an associate buy your ticket).
That makes sense, Japanese airports have distinctly non-airport prices for food and drinks even past security.
The science is still out on whether it's harmful or not. I got TSA pre so I can just avoid it, but before that I always opted out.
"The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) is part of the World Health Organization (WHO). Its major goal is to identify causes of cancer. The IARC has classified RF fields as “possibly carcinogenic to humans,” based on limited evidence of a possible increase in risk for brain tumors among cell phone users, and inadequate evidence for other types of cancer."
I would not call that "thoroughly settled".
So, an organisation that basically labels everything in the world as either a potential carcinogen or carcinogen  when the second lowest score they award still reads as 'potential carcinogen' is more powerful than actual evidence, accrued across enormous longitudinal studies, first from scandinavia  but backed significantly by australia  and integrated into a plausable mechanism for increases in >70 year olds  combined with a finding that would actually revolutionise physics and biology for suggesting a new mechanism for the interaction of electromagnetism and biology?
Alarmists are everywhere . But that doesn't mean they are right. It's easy to listen to fear, but just because someone is screaming and crying doesn't make them right. Serious claims deserve to be looked at seriously, and this one has been throughly examined, in research that is continuing. And it continues to be debunked by huge datasets - not just the referenced studies but also the million woman study  and others.
So yes, I repeat, for anyone versed in science, physics and with their head screwed on straight, the science is settled, and I challenge you to demonstrate either a mechanism or a throughly vetted dataset that proves otherwise.
And i'll remind you that hitting the first answer on google does not constitute research.
Perhaps it doesn't cause cancer per se, but promotes tumor growth or otherwise creates a more favorable environment.
(Try pouring out your biggest spinning rust drive out over any port that can keep up with the drive. It takes hours nowadays. SSDs can bottleneck at the port instead of the drive, but you can't count on your target having one yet, nor can you count on the fastest ports being available. And we're certainly not going to mass-disassemble laptops to dump their drives.)
And, still, at bulk these things aren't feasible, or even necessary. You're not taking your cynicism far enough. Why does the government need to sorta kinda hope that you might maybe take a flight with your gear someday when they're already capturing all your email and web browsing anyhow? It's a ridiculous theory that you're only entertaining because our trust has decayed to the point that the mere fact that something is an accusation against our government is all but proof that it must be true, no matter how silly it is.
No, the government is not going to set out to physically attack every laptop passing through an airport, because what would that give them that they don't already have, except huge operational costs and risk of detection?
Or maybe make even more feel yet more in fear of terrorists. Which the cynic in me thinks might be the point
From the CNN article on this new policy: >The official said the move is partly based on intelligence that they believe indicates Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula is close to being able to hide explosives with little or no metal content in electronic devices in order to target commercial aircraft.
It's a particular concern at these airports because of screening issues and the possibility of terrorists infiltrating authorized airport personnel, the official said. Flight and cabin crews are not covered by these new restrictions.
In February 2016, a bomb hidden inside a laptop detonated aboard a Daallo Airlines flight out of Mogadishu, Somalia. The bomber was killed and a hole was blown in the side of the fuselage. The aircraft landed safely.