Under a new “extreme vetting” policy being considered by the U.S. administration, British travellers may have to hand over personal information, including social media passwords and mobile phone contacts or be denied entry, according to media report.
Other U.S. allies including Germany and France, could also be forced to reveal personal data, as well as disclose financial information and face detailed ideological questioning, according to Trump administration officials.
The U.S. customs and border patrol told the media: “All international travellers arriving at the US are subject to US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) inspection. This inspection may include electronic devices such as computers, disks, drives, tapes, mobile phones and other communication devices, cameras, music and other media players and any other electronic or digital devices.
“Keeping America safe and enforcing our nation’s laws in an increasingly digital world depends on our ability to lawfully examine all materials entering the US,” it added.
This comes as last month the U.S. and the UK announced a temporary ban on certain nonstop US-bound flights from bringing laptops, iPads, cameras and some other electronics in carry-on luggage.
The decision was prompted by reports that militant groups want to smuggle explosive devices inside electronic gadgets.
The ban in UK applies to inbound flights from six countries that are Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia and Turkey while in the U.S., the ban applies to flights from eight countries Jordan, Egypt, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Qatar, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates.
Later, the Australian Government also said that passengers flying from Dubai, Doha and Abu Dhabi will undergo random explosive detection tests and targeted screening of electronic devices.