Dear friends & fellow world wanderers:

I just encountered some information even I did not know—when US citizens return home from overseas, TSA is entitled to seize our laptops and KEEP THEM FOR MONTHS if we present suspicious aspects. Please see:

If you think this is not something to worry about, may I remind you that TSA recently detained a former president of India?

I strongly suggest you take an alternate data device when traveling outside the US; especially those of us who may have ever said or written something non-complimentary about TSA and Homeland Security. You know who you are! And so do they…

And if you do have to take your main computer, as I will on a trip to Europe next month, BACK UP EVERY BIT OF DATA on it before you leave. I don’t know about you, but if I had no access to what’s on my hard drive for 6 months, it would be professionally fatal.

Yours for a better world (someday),

Eric Lucas


Eric Lucas is a an international travel and business writer who lives in Seattle; to learn more, visit his website,

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Ellen Barone has been creating words and images for travel and tourism since 1998. She co-founded and publishes the group travel blog and is currently at work on her first book "I Could Live Here".