ACLU Challenges Homeland Security Over Laptop Search Policy

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has filed a lawsuit against the US Department of Homeland Security over a policy, which allows it to conduct warrant-less searches of electronic devices at US borders.

Citing privacy issues, the ACLU claims today, electronic devices, such as laptops, smartphones and hard drives, contain sensitive personal information. The organisation claims that people's privacy will be violated when US authorities conduct a search of the devices, especially when a person is not a suspect.

The complaint, which was filed in a US District Court in Brooklyn, New York, claims that the DoH policy violates the Fourth Amendment, which protects people from warrant-less searches of their personal belongings, including electronic devices.

Catherine Crump, an attorney with the ACLU, said in a statement to Wall Street Journal: “Innocent Americans should not be made to feel like the personal information they store on their laptops and cellphones is vulnerable to searches by government officials any time they travel out of the country.”