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  • Getting to Defcon without losing your laptop

    So, what with DHS finally admitting that they are taking people's electronic devices:
    Washington Post Article
    Any bets on how many of us will be techless this year?

    Oh joy

    Wodon (wondering if he should ditch his laptops and just bring an etch a sketch)

  • #2
    Re: Getting to Defcon without losing your laptop

    Originally posted by the_wodon View Post
    So, what with DHS finally admitting that they are taking people's electronic devices:
    Washington Post Article
    Any bets on how many of us will be techless this year?

    Oh joy

    Wodon (wondering if he should ditch his laptops and just bring an etch a sketch)
    Originally posted by article
    DHS officials said the newly disclosed policies ... apply to anyone entering the country, including U.S. citizens
    This is for international travel to the US, not travel within the US, as far as I know, yet. For international travel, I think they are (ab)using laws that presently exist, which cover imports and customs.

    To bypass this, you might be able to snail-mail a laptop to th US, as there is less to profile when a person is not attached to the item being imported, and you can abuse the well known knowledge that most of the newly added airport security features put in place are for the purpose of high visibility security presence, not really application of layered security model for overall security in import of goods and entry of people into the US from non-US locations. These kinds of strict applications and (ab)use of laws don't exist to the same degree in US ports for commerce. (It wasn't long ago that the US was considering having foreign companies (not from the US) as candidates for controlling several port facilities.)
    Last edited by TheCotMan; August 1, 2008, 08:34.

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    • #3
      Re: Getting to Defcon without losing your laptop

      Originally posted by TheCotMan View Post
      This is for international travel to the US, not travel within the US, IIRC, yet. For international travel, I think they are (ab)using laws that presently exist, which cover imports and customs.
      This has been going on for some time but this is the first I have seen of the administration actually admitting it.

      I am coming in from the UK though so will have to just put up with it I suppose.

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      • #4
        Re: Getting to Defcon without losing your laptop

        Originally posted by the_wodon View Post
        This has been going on for some time but this is the first I have seen of the administration actually admitting it.

        I am coming in from the UK though so will have to just put up with it I suppose.
        Have you considered FedEx, UPS, or DHL of your tech? If not very heavy and you use the cheaper, slower rates, it might be cheaper than the checked bag fee that airlines have been charging.

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        • #5
          Re: Getting to Defcon without losing your laptop

          Originally posted by the_wodon View Post
          This has been going on for some time but this is the first I have seen of the administration actually admitting it.

          I am coming in from the UK though so will have to just put up with it I suppose.
          My brother flew in from the UK in late May, and I warned him about the issue then. He has to travel with a laptop for work, and decided to chance it. He said it wasn't a problem at JFK.

          If something is sensitive for work or privacy reasons, you should either a) leave it on a server in the UK or elsewhere, and VPN to the server; or b) encrypt it. A recent US District Court case has ruled that a person does not have to give up an encryption password, as this is a potentially a self-incrimination issue, and a violation of the Fifth Amendment of the US Constitution. Understand however, for a non-US citizen however, this may be grounds to detain the person or refuse entry to the US.
          Last edited by Thorn; August 1, 2008, 18:08. Reason: Typo
          Thorn
          "If you can't be a good example, then you'll just have to be a horrible warning." - Catherine Aird

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          • #6
            Re: Getting to Defcon without losing your laptop

            Originally posted by TheCotMan View Post
            Have you considered FedEx, UPS, or DHL of your tech? If not very heavy and you use the cheaper, slower rates, it might be cheaper than the checked bag fee that airlines have been charging.
            I did think about getting my things shipped but I am foiled by my work policy. I have to keep my laptops in my posession. Having them siezed by the feds excuses me but otherwise I have to cling onto them! This has caused much amusement in the past when booking an extra seat on the plane for a pelican case full of hard drives.

            My flight leaves in 18 hours so it is a bit late for that anyway.

            Thanks for the suggestions though

            Wodon

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            • #7
              Re: Getting to Defcon without losing your laptop

              Originally posted by the_wodon View Post
              I did think about getting my things shipped but I am foiled by my work policy. I have to keep my laptops in my posession. Having them siezed by the feds excuses me but otherwise I have to cling onto them! This has caused much amusement in the past when booking an extra seat on the plane for a pelican case full of hard drives.

              My flight leaves in 18 hours so it is a bit late for that anyway.

              Thanks for the suggestions though

              Wodon
              It isn't as though they're seizing EVERY SINGLE laptop that comes through the border. Just be a normal person when you enter customs, be friendly, polite and grant them the respect they feel the deserve. Chances are you won't have a problem at all.

              Of course, if your ticket shows a connecting flight direct to LV from NY or where-ever you're entering the country, they might suspect you're a l33t ev1l hax0r on your way to Defcon and lock you up just for fun.
              A third party security audit is the IT equivalent of a colonoscopy. It's long, intrusive, very uncomfortable, and when it's done, you'll have seen things you really didn't want to see, and you'll never forget that you've had one.

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              • #8
                Re: Getting to Defcon without losing your laptop

                I was trying to figure out how to get the Toxic BBQ shirts to con.

                Well as for baggage rates being cheaper than postal rates. I called southwest, $25 for items over 50lb but less than 80lbs, they allow 2 checked bags per person & 1 carryon + 1 personal item (laptop camera ect).

                I called Riviera, they want $5.50 per 15lb to hold anything you ship there.
                I called USPS, 30lb 20x16x16 box 3 day priority mail is $34

                I ended up needing 2 boxes, 2x$34 = 68 + $22 Riviera Charges. $90
                Even one huge box was $70.

                So Im better off packing the 60lbs into a large spare suitcase and paying the extra $25 for overweight. Then I dont have to jack with Riviera to pickup my boxes, make a trip to the post office ect.. Just have to hassle a 60lb suitcase 1 way at the airport.

                Maybe this is just Southwest, but they are also still offering free sodas & peanuts, and not charging for 2 bags under 50lbs. I wonder how long this is going to last.

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                • #9
                  Re: Getting to Defcon without losing your laptop

                  I ended up shipping mine via UPS. I think for around 30 shirts it was $ 12.00 + Riv fee. Could just ship to vegas and ask UPS to hold at their facility if you have a car..

                  Originally posted by [Syntax] View Post
                  I was trying to figure out how to get the Toxic BBQ shirts to con.

                  Well as for baggage rates being cheaper than postal rates. I called southwest, $25 for items over 50lb but less than 80lbs, they allow 2 checked bags per person & 1 carryon + 1 personal item (laptop camera ect).

                  I called Riviera, they want $5.50 per 15lb to hold anything you ship there.
                  I called USPS, 30lb 20x16x16 box 3 day priority mail is $34

                  I ended up needing 2 boxes, 2x$34 = 68 + $22 Riviera Charges. $90
                  Even one huge box was $70.

                  So Im better off packing the 60lbs into a large spare suitcase and paying the extra $25 for overweight. Then I dont have to jack with Riviera to pickup my boxes, make a trip to the post office ect.. Just have to hassle a 60lb suitcase 1 way at the airport.

                  Maybe this is just Southwest, but they are also still offering free sodas & peanuts, and not charging for 2 bags under 50lbs. I wonder how long this is going to last.
                  +++ Dallas +++

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                  • #10
                    Re: Getting to Defcon without losing your laptop

                    There are also several UPS Stores you can ship to in LV. I shipped a bunch of stuff to the nearest one last year and it worked well.
                    Thorn
                    "If you can't be a good example, then you'll just have to be a horrible warning." - Catherine Aird

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                    • #11
                      Re: Getting to Defcon without losing your laptop

                      Originally posted by streaker69 View Post
                      It isn't as though they're seizing EVERY SINGLE laptop that comes through the border. Just be a normal person when you enter customs, be friendly, polite and grant them the respect they feel the deserve. Chances are you won't have a problem at all.

                      Of course, if your ticket shows a connecting flight direct to LV from NY or where-ever you're entering the country, they might suspect you're a l33t ev1l hax0r on your way to Defcon and lock you up just for fun.
                      Yeh, I'm not too worried about it, just that it would be a royal pain if I got singled out.
                      And I am flying direct to Vegas direct from London with a bag full of cables (which of course can only be used to overthrow the government, and not recharge batteries) :-)

                      I was just pointing out the article because we have been hearing rumors of TSA/DHS doing this for months now without them actually admitting it.

                      Wodon (resisting the urge to use the phrase 'Vegas Baby')

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                      • #12
                        Re: Getting to Defcon without losing your laptop

                        Originally posted by the_wodon View Post
                        (resisting the urge to use the phrase 'Vegas Baby')
                        Yeah, but are you using the phrase "hookers and blow" ?
                        Thorn
                        "If you can't be a good example, then you'll just have to be a horrible warning." - Catherine Aird

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Getting to Defcon without losing your laptop

                          Originally posted by Thorn View Post
                          Yeah, but are you using the phrase "hookers and blow" ?
                          Excellent, I assume this is some kind of passphrase used by locals to show that they are not tourists.

                          I shall declare this as my intentions to customs as soon as I arrive to get the special "locals rate"


                          Thanks

                          Wodon (Yes officer, I am of course here for the hookers and blow *wink*)

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                          • #14
                            Re: Getting to Defcon without losing your laptop

                            Originally posted by the_wodon View Post
                            Excellent, I assume this is some kind of passphrase used by locals to show that they are not tourists.

                            I shall declare this as my intentions to customs as soon as I arrive to get the special "locals rate"


                            Thanks

                            Wodon (Yes officer, I am of course here for the hookers and blow *wink*)
                            Make sure you say you brought your own Blow, that will get you right through customs straight away.
                            A third party security audit is the IT equivalent of a colonoscopy. It's long, intrusive, very uncomfortable, and when it's done, you'll have seen things you really didn't want to see, and you'll never forget that you've had one.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Getting to Defcon without losing your laptop

                              You might even get a couple of guys to carry you through customs that way. Who says New Yorkers are rude?
                              ----------------------------------------
                              Fraternal Order of Locksport

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