US may extend laptop ban to UK flights

Old May 12, 17, 1:15 pm
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The following posted on Reuters about 20 min ago.

U.S. and European officials will discuss airline security issues at a meeting in Brussels next week, including possibly expanding the number of airports that ban passengers from carrying electronic devices bigger than cellphones aboard flights, a European Commission spokeswoman said on Friday.

U.S. Homeland Security Department Secretary John Kelly told European ministers by phone Friday the department does not plan to immediately unveil any new measures, the EU said.

U.S. Homeland Security spokesman David Lapan said no final decision had been made on whether to expand the restrictions, and he declined to immediately confirm Kelly's trip to Brussels.
Source

If it does go through, it would be great if airline could make their monitors work with stick PCs through the USB port. The BA screens are not really the best for it, except maybe on the 789 in F.

Last edited by henkybaby; May 12, 17 at 2:06 pm
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Old May 12, 17, 2:25 pm
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Originally Posted by smuDC-10 View Post
I seem to recall that when flights resumed after 9/11 there was a period of a few weeks or months where many airlines allowed no hand baggage in the cabin (I don't remember if this was a law or just airline policy). I think one was given a clear plastic bag to keep wallet, keys etc in but that was it.
I suspect that you may be thinking about August 2006, not September 2001?
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Old May 12, 17, 2:56 pm
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Originally Posted by Globaliser View Post
I suspect that you may be thinking about August 2006, not September 2001?
Yes. I think the 2006 ban is the one that was sticking out in my mind. Thank you for clarifying. I do remember though some select airlines having hand baggage restrictions immediately following 9/11 although it wasn't as severe as the 2006 ban.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/ukne...tightened.html
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Old May 12, 17, 3:02 pm
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Originally Posted by BlackBerryAddict View Post
From the Daily Mail "The U.S. airlines still hope to have a say in how the policy is put into effect at airports to minimize inconvenience to passengers."

I think that is codespeak for "We do not want the ban to apply to us, but just to foreign airlines"

And on the Delta sign - I have seen a picture of a Heathrow one, but I cannot confirm the authenticity.
If that would happen it would be proof this is part of the Hire American Buy American campaign.

In that case I sincerely hope the EU retaliates.
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Old May 12, 17, 3:13 pm
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Originally Posted by smuDC-10 View Post
If this ban does indeed go into effect I wonder how long it will last. Will it be permanent or just in place until security screening technology is somehow made better? I seem to recall that when flights resumed after 9/11 there was a period of a few weeks or months where many airlines allowed no hand baggage in the cabin (I don't remember if this was a law or just airline policy). I think one was given a clear plastic bag to keep wallet, keys etc in but that was it. I also remember instances years ago when I had to power on my electronic devices at security to prove that they worked. While this new ban seems rushed and ill thought out, I guess it isn't really uncharted territory for the airline industry.
Honestly a "power on" check should be more than enough to confirm its a real laptop.

I've had the power-on check done in the past year at several airports (Dubai, Ljubljana, Karachi, HongKong), and its not a big deal at all. That should be more than enough instead of a blanket ban.
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Old May 12, 17, 4:04 pm
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Originally Posted by nomii View Post
Honestly a "power on" check should be more than enough to confirm its a real laptop

...

.
Sadly not.

The Yemen raid has put the security establishment into a flat spin of panic

It is now clear that:

1. the enemy have successfully developed a hull breach capability hidden in laptop battery housings
2. the brief scan of carry on luggage in insufficient to reliably detect these IEDs
3. there is compelling evidence of a plot to attack multiple flights simultaneously with such devices

Over to you, sceptics ... 5000+ lives are at imminent risk: what's your next move ?
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Old May 12, 17, 6:35 pm
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Originally Posted by nomii View Post
Honestly a "power on" check should be more than enough to confirm its a real laptop.

I've had the power-on check done in the past year at several airports (Dubai, Ljubljana, Karachi, HongKong), and its not a big deal at all. That should be more than enough instead of a blanket ban.
Battery packs take up a LOT more of a notebook frame these days, the logic board isn't like an old school motherboard anymore. You can still put a battery pack in with lots less capacity and have an explosive device present - notebook would work fine but with much less time. screening the notebook better via imaging and doing explosive validation through the same machines that do secondary screening would NEAR eliminate the threat - would still be remotely possible to do.

Originally Posted by Fitch View Post
Over to you, sceptics ... 5000+ lives are at imminent risk: what's your next move ?
Don't you think these guys are going to move to timed vs manual - so put them in the hold? I don't for a second believe that's better no matter what "experts" are saying.
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Old May 12, 17, 6:43 pm
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"Sorry Sir, but bombs are to be checked into the hold."
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Old May 12, 17, 6:53 pm
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Originally Posted by Fitch View Post
Sadly not.

The Yemen raid has put the security establishment into a flat spin of panic

It is now clear that:

1. the enemy have successfully developed a hull breach capability hidden in laptop battery housings
2. the brief scan of carry on luggage in insufficient to reliably detect these IEDs
3. there is compelling evidence of a plot to attack multiple flights simultaneously with such devices

Over to you, sceptics ... 5000+ lives are at imminent risk: what's your next move ?
I'll see your 5000and raise you 682.🙄

Terrorists have found a way to put bombs into laptops (smart terrorists) that are not traceable - go with me on this - but have not found a way to detonate these bombs by using timers (stupid terrorists), which funnily enough laptops have inbuilt.

Let's put all devices in hold so the pesky terrorists cannot do a cattle-alt-del type detonation.Hooray and the good guys win again 🤔
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Old May 12, 17, 7:24 pm
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Originally Posted by Fitch View Post
Sadly not.

The Yemen raid has put the security establishment into a flat spin of panic

It is now clear that:

1. the enemy have successfully developed a hull breach capability hidden in laptop battery housings
2. the brief scan of carry on luggage in insufficient to reliably detect these IEDs
3. there is compelling evidence of a plot to attack multiple flights simultaneously with such devices

Over to you, sceptics ... 5000+ lives are at imminent risk: what's your next move ?
This is just a theory floating around. None of this is confirmed.
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Old May 12, 17, 7:35 pm
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Surely the only way to make this work if it is to be applied is to ban electronics in hand luggage to all destinations at airports where flights depart to US. Otherwise terrorist 1 could purchase ticket to a non US destination and pass laptop to Terrorist 2 once through security. Otherwise you're going to need a full baggage check at each departing gate.
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Old May 12, 17, 7:39 pm
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Originally Posted by PJSMITH0 View Post
Surely the only way to make this work if it is to be applied is to ban electronics in hand luggage to all destinations at airports where flights depart to US. Otherwise terrorist 1 could purchase ticket to a non US destination and pass laptop to Terrorist 2 once through security. Otherwise you're going to need a full baggage check at each departing gate.
Frankly, I do love the gate security airports such as SIN.
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Old May 12, 17, 8:23 pm
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Originally Posted by PJSMITH0 View Post
Otherwise you're going to need a full baggage check at each departing gate.
Which is exactly what they have been doing for the past 6 weeks from CAI/AMM/IST/BEY etc. Takes forever - very thorough hand baggage check, phone power on/unlocking, full patdown.
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Old May 13, 17, 2:36 am
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Originally Posted by Fitch View Post
Sadly not.

The Yemen raid has put the security establishment into a flat spin of panic

It is now clear that:

1. the enemy have successfully developed a hull breach capability hidden in laptop battery housings
2. the brief scan of carry on luggage in insufficient to reliably detect these IEDs
3. there is compelling evidence of a plot to attack multiple flights simultaneously with such devices

Over to you, sceptics ... 5000+ lives are at imminent risk: what's your next move ?
As a cynic and a skeptic of security theatre, here's what I'd say:
(1) It's pretty clear to me that not everyone in the intel world is buying it (namely, the Europeans aren't, and I'm not hearing chatter about imposing this sort of stuff in, say, Singapore atm), so that puts a damper on the "X lives are at risk". I'd counter that there is debatable intelligence on the question rather than a threat that Hopeless Stupidity can specifically point to in order to justify temporary measures.

(2) If there were actionable intelligence at a given time, implementing a sort of "enhanced security protocol" involving stuff like this would be one thing. Of course, given that of the five terror alert colors I've never seen either blue or green used I'm also of the opinion that one of them should be simply abolished as redundant. In light of this I don't trust the Dept. of Hopeless Stupidity to actually do this only in cases of actionable intelligence.

(3) I'm going to extrapolate slightly: Given that they don't even seem to be willing to exempt preclearance flights (since AUH was in the initial ten) this suggests that a domestic ban is probably in the works as well, which is IMO why the airlines are really spazzing out. In this case, I come back to the point that was made about the knock-on effects of 9/11: Increased driving post-9/11 due to added security issues has probably killed more people in resulting car crashes than died on 9/11. There's a (very cold but very sincere) case to be made that given the choice between these terror groups knocking a plane out of the sky once every year or driving a large amount of traffic away from air travel, the former would actually be the utilitarian solution.

Clearly (3) doesn't quite apply to TATL/TPAC travel, but if you only apply this to international travel then all you're going to do is move the target from a B777 going BOS-LHR to a B767 going from ATL-SEA (or possibly targeting one of the occasional domestic jumbo flights around the holidays).

The other problem, of course, is that two would-be bombers with a pair of cell phones apiece (it is not unrealistic for folks to have two phones...either one business/one personal or one US/one international: A good friend of mine lived in Canada for a year and got a separate phone for that time) and perhaps a spare battery apiece could probably do a bit of swapping when they get onboard...and congrats, now you have six batteries you can probably do some "arts and crafts" in the lavatory with.

The other issue is practical mitigation of the side-effects of this. I can very easily see a lawyer balking at the idea of putting his laptop (with all sorts of sensitive, attorney-client protected material) in a checked bag. Same thing with many corporate executives: Even if the stuff just "goes astray" for a day or so, that can be a Big Problem even if we ignore lost productivity and so on.
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Old May 13, 17, 2:39 am
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Latest I've seen on politico is that there will be a face-to-face meeting with people at a ministerial level on Wednesday with representatives from the US and a number of EU countries including the UK to discuss this issue.
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