The Trump administration is considering ‘extreme vetting’ of tourists and visitors to the United States, including asking them to give up their mobile phone contacts, social media passwords, financial data and answer questions about their ideology.
Trump has already tried to impose a travel ban on several Muslim-majority countries, but this has been blocked twice in court. In March US authorities announced a ban on certain electronic devices on US-bound flights from a list of countries. The list of airports affected by the ban were all in the Arab World.
Unlike his previous bans which have targeted Muslim-majority countries this extreme vetting may well include visitors from a far wider range of countries including the UK and France.
The aim is to “figure out who you are communicating with” said a senior official in the Department of Homeland Security.
What you can get on the average person’s phone can be invaluable.