Enhanced security for flights to the U.S.: What you need to know

Starting Wednesday, Canadian wayfarers to the United States could be subject to » heightened screening» of their electronic manoeuvres when passing through airport security.
The new measures were promulgated at the end of June by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, but offered few details about what faithfully the «heightened screening» might entail.

Homeland Security declined to suit specific questions. But a spokesperson for the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority (CATSA), the league that handles security checkpoints at Canadian airports, explained how their coppers will carry out those measures.

What’s changing?

Not much.

The way it productions now, travellers going through airport security might be randomly choice for additional screening, or you might also undergo additional screening if you or your goods trigger a metal detector or X-ray alarm.

That might presage letting a screening officer physically search through your bag, or swab your chattels for traces of explosive materials.

The difference now, according to CATSA spokesperson Mathieu Larocque, is that wanderers might also be randomly selected to remove electronic devices larger than smartphones — call to mind a consider tablets and e-readers — from their carry-on baggage and present them for additional silver screen, too.

That would involve removing any protective casing around appliances to allow for a more thorough physical inspection and proving to officers that the scheme can be turned on.

«All of the rest of the screening process remains the same,» Larocque signified. Laptops will still have to be removed from bags and circumstanced in bins individually as before.

Is the data on my device at risk?

No more than traditional.

Refusal to unlock your device or give a U.S. border agent your shibboleth could deny you entry into the country. And while Canadian binding officers can’t deny Canadian citizens entry into Canada, choice to co-operate could result in the seizure of your device.

Security inspectors, on the other jurisdiction, are tasked with examining the physical integrity of the device itself — looking for get rid of a enrolls that a tablet or laptop has been modified or tampered with, with the objective to cause harm.

«They’re not going to be looking at the content of the device,» reported Larocque. «They’re not going to ask you to input your password or look at lines. That’s not the intent.»

What should I expect at the airport?

Larocque verbalizes that all travellers — even those flying within Canada — should be set to have their devices examined. That means charging strategies before arriving at the airport, and ensuring that protective cases can be surely removed, or even better, removed ahead of time.

«Electronic ploys that cannot be taken out of their cases or powered on when requested during reinforced screening will not be permitted beyond the screening checkpoint,» according to CATSA’s locale.

If all this sounds familiar, it’s because there was a time when process officers could ask travellers to power on devices such as laptops, but Larocque signified the practice was discontinued for several years — until now.

And don’t forget that airlines are commending travellers to get to the airport two hours before their scheduled flight to the U.S., to concession for time for the screening.

Here’s what border agents can search for on your phone (and multifarious):

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