TSA: Search your iPhone? Yes we can!

Old Jul 23, 12, 9:12 am
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Exclamation TSA: Search your iPhone? Yes we can!

This motion to dismiss stated that the TSA has the right to search bags not only for WEI, but also for “identification media.” They reason that a terrorist might be using a fake ID, and therefore if they can find a fake ID in your bag, they might stop a terrorist from boarding an airplane.

This term (“identificaiton media”) is not defined in their motion or in their internal policy that discusses it. At the least, they claim ID cards, credit cards, and the like are covered. What about a bank statement, insurance bill, or official letter? Often times a DMV will ask for something along those lines as proof of your identification. How about those prescription bottles? Everything has your name on it and nothing looks “suspicious” about the pills inside, yeah? What about every other document? Might have to read it to make sure it’s not a bank statement, bill, official letter, etc. What about turning on your iPhone to see what name shows up in there? You laptop will presumably identify you and all your e-mail “aliases,” right? And what are you doing with that “suspicious” amount of cash? A terrorist might deal in cash, after all.
http://tsaoutofourpants.wordpress.co...-in-your-bags/

--Jon
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Old Jul 23, 12, 12:28 pm
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they can do whatever they want after they incorrectly input the password and wipe the phone.
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Old Jul 23, 12, 12:58 pm
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I'd like to see them try to get information off my phone after I "accidentally" "drop" it on the floor.
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Old Jul 23, 12, 1:01 pm
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1. I used a fake ID many times in my youth to get myself into places I shouldn't have been. Even carried a fake ID onto a plane with me a time or two because I knew I was going somewhere full of places I shouldn't have been. I'm pretty sure I was never a threat to the aircraft.

2. Enjoy trying to get into my Android. I have an app that makes the thing wail like a banshee if the wrong password is entered too many times. I'd love to see the look on the TSO's face as they realize that they've just set off an obnoxiously-loud siren at a checkpoint full of people who've been conditioned to fear the boogeyman at every step.
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Old Jul 23, 12, 1:31 pm
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Originally Posted by T.J. Bender View Post
1. I used a fake ID many times in my youth to get myself into places I shouldn't have been. Even carried a fake ID onto a plane with me a time or two because I knew I was going somewhere full of places I shouldn't have been. I'm pretty sure I was never a threat to the aircraft.

2. Enjoy trying to get into my Android. I have an app that makes the thing wail like a banshee if the wrong password is entered too many times. I'd love to see the look on the TSO's face as they realize that they've just set off an obnoxiously-loud siren at a checkpoint full of people who've been conditioned to fear the boogeyman at every step.
Could I suggest changing that to a really loud ticking sound?
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Old Jul 23, 12, 2:06 pm
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Originally Posted by T.J. Bender View Post

2. I have an app that makes the thing wail like a banshee if the wrong password is entered too many times.
You are my new hero. I only hope to be in the terminal when that happens.

Originally Posted by nachtnebel View Post
Could I suggest changing that to a really loud ticking sound?
Sorry, T.J., nachtnebel is my new hero.

Mike
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Old Jul 23, 12, 2:24 pm
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Originally Posted by nachtnebel View Post
Could I suggest changing that to a really loud ticking sound?
And get his phone blown up by the EOD guys???
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Old Jul 23, 12, 2:26 pm
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Originally Posted by Loren Pechtel View Post
And get his phone blown up by the EOD guys???
EOD guys are generally smart enough to know that a ticking phone isn't a bomb.
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Old Jul 23, 12, 2:30 pm
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How can they claim anything as "identification media" that they don't list as an acceptable ID? They are obviously appealing to a judge with the attention span of my cat.
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Old Jul 23, 12, 3:25 pm
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Originally Posted by lovely15 View Post
EOD guys are generally smart enough to know that a ticking phone isn't a bomb.
Sure they are, but the TSA isn't.

I'd love to see the look the TSA got from EOD when the former showed the latter the "bomb".
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Old Jul 23, 12, 3:45 pm
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Originally Posted by sandiegofun View Post
they can do whatever they want after they incorrectly input the password and wipe the phone.
It they really wanted the information they'd use forensics techniques that bypass the screen lock and suck the information off unencrypted.

But that's being paranoid because the 4th amendment stands in their way, right?
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Old Jul 23, 12, 4:07 pm
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Originally Posted by FliesWay2Much View Post
How can they claim anything as "identification media" that they don't list as an acceptable ID? They are obviously appealing to a judge with the attention span of my cat.
They didn't claim that. The blogger/OP did.

The judge hasn't ruled yet, either, so I'm pretty we don't know the judge's attention span -- or your cat's, for that matter.

The iPhone was thrown in by the blogger to generate a sensationalistic headline that would grab readers. There is nowhere in the Motion to Dismiss that in any way suggests that TSA believes it's acceptable to search someone's phone under the guise of seeking "Identification media."

In fact, the MTD & Memorandum in support that the blogger posted don't even contain the phrase "identification media," or the quote that the blogger called out on the post. (ETA: The MTD doesn't contain it; the Memorandum does.)

What's sad is that, this lawsuit might *actually* have some merit to determining how constitutional some of TSA's policies are, but as long as the blogger turns every question or issue into a slippery slope, the mainstream won't listen.

Last edited by UshuaiaHammerfest; Jul 24, 12 at 12:04 am Reason: Corrected inaccuracy about the Memorandum
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Old Jul 23, 12, 4:42 pm
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Originally Posted by UshuaiaHammerfest View Post
In fact, the MTD & Memorandum in support that the blogger posted don't even contain the phrase "identification media," or the quote that the blogger called out on the post.
I found the term "identification media" on page 3 of the Memorandum of Support, lines 1 and 2. It may appear elsewhere as well.

That part of the Memorandum contains the quote the blogger called out in the post.
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Old Jul 23, 12, 6:31 pm
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You need to put two and two together. The TSA has now said we can search for WEI and "identification media" without defining what that is. We've all seen that the TSA stretches every rule and twist of language possible (for example, refusing to let them molest your daughter, taking off your clothes in protest, being upset, etc. all meets the TSA's view of "interference with checkpoint screening"), and it really doesn't take a big stretch to conclude that the TSA will now see itself justified searching anything that "may" identify you.

Originally Posted by UshuaiaHammerfest View Post
The iPhone was thrown in by the blogger to generate a sensationalistic headline that would grab readers. There is nowhere in the Motion to Dismiss that in any way suggests that TSA believes it's acceptable to search someone's phone under the guise of seeking "Identification media."
--Jon
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Old Jul 23, 12, 7:06 pm
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Originally Posted by UshuaiaHammerfest View Post
They didn't claim that. The blogger/OP did. ... There is nowhere in the Motion to Dismiss that in any way suggests that TSA believes it's acceptable to search someone's phone under the guise of seeking "Identification media."... but as long as the blogger turns every question or issue into a slippery slope, the mainstream won't listen.
All legal arguments can be viewed as "slippery slope" arguments! You always say "If X were the case, then wouldn't Y also be?". Remember the Supreme Court Justice's questions in the ACA case, such as "If you claim the government can force people to buy health insurance, do you believe the government can also force people to buy brocoli?".

It's perfectly reasonable to argue "if you accept the TSA's belief that they can search any bag looking for a false ID, doesn't that also mean they can search a phone or computer looking for evidence of fake ID?".
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