Monday, March 23, 2009

More on ACTA and laptop searches

Michael Geist responds to my last post by quoting from an EU submission to the ACTA talks: "Where a traveller's personal baggage contains goods of a non-commercial nature within the limits of the duty-free allowance and there are no material indications to suggest the goods are part of commercial traffic, each Party may consider to leave such goods, or part of such goods outside the scope of this section."

I read this as allowing parties to decide not to apply the terms of ACTA to personal baggage. Such an exemption seems fine from a national security point of view, since the Parties remain free to conduct electronic searches in accordance with their existing policy. They are also free to change that policy if they wish.

That's what ACTA should do. In fact, if the US negotiators are smart, they'll adopt something like the EU proposal just to make sure that people can't campaign against ACTA by suggesting it will mean a dragnet for downloaded music at the border.

And full props to Michael, who is not only well informed, he's got the texts to prove it. So why is EFF filing a FOIA claim with the US government to get ACTA docs? They can just ask Michael for them.

1 comment:

the-pathogen said...

I have 6 hard drives, hooked up to one computer with ~1.50 terabytes of data, and anywhere between 500,000 - 750,000 individual files.

That's on one computer. I have 3.

Do you believe I am to be accountable for each of these files? Especially considering that, as the nature of hard-drives, I can not permanently remove data that I discover to be "illegal".

The most difficult part of preforming computer searches - as the only software that I know of only searches "headers" - it would be very easy for someone to bypass those searches with available software currently on the net. If someone was so inclined, it would be easy to not only physically hide the object containing the data, but also avoid the scans if the data is found.

I would recommend reading Orin Kerr's "Searches and Seizures in a Digital World".