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IPFS News Link • Privacy Rights

Court Rules Government Can't Search Your Phone at the Airport for No Reason

•, by Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai

A federal court in Boston has ruled that US government agents cannot search travelers' electronic devices at the border without reasonable suspicion, marking a significant win for privacy rights.

The US District Court of Massachusetts issued an order on Tuesday, ruling that agents need specific and individual suspicion of illegal contraband to search a traveler's phone, laptop, or other digital device. US Customs and Border Patrol (CBP), as well as Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), have long argued that there are no Fourth Amendment protections for travelers at the border, meaning agents can search the contents of laptops or phones without having to get a warrant, or even justify it with specific suspicions of wrongdoing.