NYTimes: Border Officers Nearly Double Searches of Electronic Devices, US Says by Ron Nixon:
WASHINGTON — Customs officers at the border and at airports almost doubled their searches of electronic devices of people entering the United States in the last six months, according to data released Tuesday by Customs and Border Protection.
Despite the surge in searches — nearly 15,000 from October to March, compared with 8,383 in the same period in 2015 and ’16 — agency officials said the latest numbers represent less than one percent of the 189.6 million travelers that arrived in the United States in that period.
“These searches, which affect fewer than one-hundredth of one percent of international travelers, have contributed to national security investigations, arrests for child pornography and evidence of human trafficking,” said John P. Wagner, a deputy assistant commissioner at Customs and Border Protection.
Privacy activists say the searches are invasive and violate Fourth Amendment protections against unreasonable searches.