CSI Professor Camp joins Academics and CTD in Condemning DHS password proposal

IU Professor Jean Camp joins professors from Yale and Harvard with CTD in Condemning DHS Proposal to Demand Passwords to Enter the U.S.


In response to newly proposed DHS rules that would allow border agents to require handing over of passwords as a requirement of entering the US, professors, businesses and civil rights organizations have come together to condemn the new rules.

As reported in newspapers from The Atlantic to CNN, the US Department of Homeland Security wants to ask all foreign visitors entering the US for the passwords to their digital lives in an open demand to look into every digital corner of their lives from personal to business, political, and religious under threat of refusal to allow entry to those who decline to hand over their passwords.

Immediately concerns were raised as to both the wisdom and practicality of the plan as reported in The Atlantic:

“While the reasonable-suspicion standard for a border search is pretty low, it would at least preclude a blanket rule that every traveler disclose their passwords to online material and services,” said Al Gidari, the director of privacy at the Stanford Center for Internet and Society.'

In response, a wide coalition of academics, businesses, privacy watchdogs, and rights experts have come together with CDT to make a joint statement condemning the plan:

CDT: NO to DHS Social Media Password Requirement

"The first rule of online security is simple: Do not share your passwords. No government agency should undermine security, privacy, and other rights with a blanket policy of demanding passwords from individuals."

IU's own Professor Jean Camp is a signatory on the letter and has expressed her own condemnation of DHS's plan:

"Forcing disclosure of authenticating information makes us all less, not more, safe."

The CDT describes itself as a "champion of global online civil liberties and human rights, driving policy outcomes that keep the Internet open, innovative, and free."  It is headquartered in Washington and is a 503(c)(3) nonprofit organization.

The DHS has not responded yet to the CDT joint statement.