If implemented, the restriction would echo the ban already imposed on passengers from ten Middle Eastern nations.
The Guardian has revealed that the Trump administration is contemplating a laptop ban on US-bound passengers traveling from UK airports. If imposed, this new ban would mean that travelers headed to the US from the United Kingdom would be unable to bring laptops and possibly other electronic devices into the cabin as part of their carry-on luggage. It echoes a similar restriction announced earlier this spring for those flying to America from ten airports across the Middle East and North Africa.
The paper reports that authorities in Britain aren’t certain if these restrictions will be imposed, but an unnamed source has intimated to the outlet that America is considering a ban.
It is not known exactly why American authorities are contemplating these new restrictions, but the Trump administration has expressed its concerns over intelligence findings that indicate that terrorists may attempt to hide explosives in smaller electronic devices.
Speaking for the Department of Homeland Security, Gillian Christensen was quoted by the paper as saying “We’ve said we will continue to evaluate the threat environment and make determinations based on that assessment, but we have not made any decisions on expanding the current restrictions against large electronic devices in aircraft cabins from selected airports.”
In a separate move, the UK has already issued its own ban on electronic devices from six countries, including Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia and Turkey.
However, these bans have been met with widespread criticism by professionals within the technology sector. Nicholas Weaver, a researcher at the International Computer Science Institute at the University of California, Berkeley, was quoted by the paper last month as saying that the perceived level of threat, “doesn’t match a conventional threat model. If you assume the attacker is interested in turning a laptop into a bomb, it would work just as well in the cargo hold.”