TLV security with a burner phone

Old Aug 19, 19, 1:44 pm
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TLV security with a burner phone

A French friend of mine is going to Jerusalem in a few weeks, first time visit to Israel. He read about TLV security (stories about them looking into mails) and does not want to give them his mobile devices unlocked for inspection if they ask.
But as he does not want to travel without a way to be joined or join people, he plans to travel with a burner phone only, reset to factory settings with no link to any account or app, except for a few selected contacts.
I think that if they ask to see his phone and realise it is an empty phone but for some contact, it will make things more suspicious.

Any thoughts ?
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Old Aug 19, 19, 4:52 pm
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Unless your friend has something to hide or is a member of BDS or is going to support hamas and poopoo Israel, he has nothing to be afraid of with his real phone

that said they arent stupid and going in with a new phone w/o anything will led to a long interview if stopped. If hes up to things the Israelis are looking out for, unless hes doing in private w/o ever being public about it , they probably have them on their radar and going in as they want to will be a worthless try. Just knowing their name can result in Israel informing the air;ine , they arent Welcomed and will be turned away and the airline wont let them board

I dont of anyone who has a clean phone or laptop void of everything including usage
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Old Aug 20, 19, 1:16 am
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I agree that there is no major issue, but I also agree with the previous poster that they may regard this with mild suspicion if they get to the point of inspecting it.

I requested a second passport when traveling to Israel because mine had stamps from Syria, Iran, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, etc. and didn't want to deal with hassle. Combine a blank passport with an itinerary to DXB (via AMM on RJ, which seems to be a very uncommon itinerary departing from Israel), and I received a lot of scrutiny including the full back-room treatment. I had nothing to hide though (well, I guess I did -- my travels to places hostile to Israel, but they didn't ask about my travel patterns other than my itinerary that day) and it wasn't a big deal.
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Old Aug 20, 19, 12:21 pm
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The concern he has with using his real phone is simply a privacy concern one. In case he got selected for the full treatment, he does not want people going through his email and web history. It is a matter of principle in a way.
We did a land crossing together to enter Canada and he was abashed at them going through my unlocked iPad.
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Old Aug 20, 19, 6:12 pm
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Plenty of suckers still "rent" international phones (or at least I assume they do because companies offering international phones for rental are still aplenty). So, it wouldn't exactly be rare for someone to be traveling with a clean phone.

As others said, the phone itself isn't going to raise suspicions. He'll raise suspicions if there are other reasons that would give the authorities alarm.
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Old Aug 20, 19, 9:00 pm
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Originally Posted by mecabq View Post
I agree that there is no major issue, but I also agree with the previous poster that they may regard this with mild suspicion if they get to the point of inspecting it.

I requested a second passport when traveling to Israel because mine had stamps from Syria, Iran, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, etc. and didn't want to deal with hassle. Combine a blank passport with an itinerary to DXB (via AMM on RJ, which seems to be a very uncommon itinerary departing from Israel), and I received a lot of scrutiny including the full back-room treatment. I had nothing to hide though (well, I guess I did -- my travels to places hostile to Israel, but they didn't ask about my travel patterns other than my itinerary that day) and it wasn't a big deal.
The RJ itinerary is not that uncommon especially since El Al cut their ties with OW a couple of years ago. We go to Israel via AMM frequently and it's been a pretty cursory question at tlv security of what we did in Jordan . We have Abu Dhabi preclearance stickers as well as Dubai and Qatar entries and again it's a quick question. I think a clean phone would arouse more suspicion..thats out of pattern for a normal traveler.
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Old Aug 22, 19, 2:05 pm
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Just set it up as his normal phone but avoid linking the most sensitive items.

Doesn't everyone have a "burner" email address? I delete all my chat messages every month or so.
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Old Aug 26, 19, 5:33 am
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Originally Posted by LAX_Esq View Post
Plenty of suckers still "rent" international phones (or at least I assume they do because companies offering international phones for rental are still aplenty). So, it wouldn't exactly be rare for someone to be traveling with a clean phone.

As others said, the phone itself isn't going to raise suspicions. He'll raise suspicions if there are other reasons that would give the authorities alarm.
Agreed with this. Very common to bring in an international rental phone without much info.
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