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EU and US Reach Deal On Airline Data 132

gambit3 writes "According to the BBC, the EU and the US have struck a new deal for sharing airline passenger data. It will replace a deal struck down by the European Court of Justice in May, which allowed the US its own access to passenger data. Under the deal, the EU will 'push' the data — 34 pieces of information per passenger — to the US, replacing the current 'pull' system. The new deal will expire at the end of July 2007."
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EU and US Reach Deal On Airline Data

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  • What are the 34 data items?
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      What are the 34 data items?

      I don't know but I am sure US customs will make sure that retrieving at least one of them will involve a large and cold hand, a latex glove and a rectal search.
      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward
        I don't know but I am sure US customs will make sure that retrieving at least one of them will involve a large and cold hand, a latex glove and a rectal search.

        It is only for health purposes. US Customs doesn't want anyone coming into the country with hiccups. It's really just a public service.
    • by MrNaz ( 730548 )
      I bet "Passenger is wearing a turban?" is in there.
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by TheRaven64 ( 641858 )
        I bet "Passenger is wearing a turban?" is in there.

        Yup. Got to watch out for all those Sikh terrorists...

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by bogie ( 31020 )
        How about "Passenger is wearing a t-shirt is another language so he must be threat."?

        It's certainly an effective means of distinguishing potential terrorists. If you don't look, act, and think just like you MUST be a terrorist or terrorist supporter. I never thought I'd see the day when my president said that.
      • Why shouldn't we start doing some profiling? How many little gray haired caucasian grandmothers have tried a terrorist act lately? There is no such thing as an atheist in a foxhole. I myself pray to Budda, Mohammed, Jesus-H-Christ and any other religous huncho I can think of.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Rob Kaper ( 5960 )
      I don't know all of them but they include:

      - Name
      - Passport no. and nationality
      - Creditcard no.
      - DOB and POB
      - Food preference
      - Religion
      - Seat (preference)

      I wonder how this is going to work though, I've never had an airliner ask me for my religion and if they would, they could file me with all the other Pastafarians on the flight. Good luck profiling that.
      • by hcob$ ( 766699 )
        Got some documentation of that? Or, are you just trying to cause an uproar?
    • by foobsr ( 693224 )
      Pulled from here [spy.org.uk]:

      1. PNR record locator code
      2. Date of reservation
      3. Date(s) of intended travel
      4. Name
      5. Other names on PNR
      6. Address
      7. All forms of payment information
      8. Billing address
      9. Contact telephone numbers
      10. All travel itinerary for specific PNR
      11. Frequent flyer information (limited to miles flown and address(es))
      12. Travel agency
      13. Travel agent
      14. Code share PNR information
      15. Travel status of passenger
      16. Split/Divided PNR information
      17. Email address
      18. Ticketing fiel

  • by MrNaz ( 730548 )
    Wasn't push technology a still-born concept in the mid 90s? I tried PointCast once, and only once. I'm glad push technology died. Push technology, or the uncontrollable incoming flow of content, just does not work on the Internet, thats what TV is for. What's that? I'm only vaguely on topic? Oh sorry... I guess I should be grateful they (the EU) aren't using more recently developed methods of data streaming. It could be worse, passenger data could be available as an RSS feed!
    • Push technology, or the uncontrollable incoming flow of content, just does not work

      Surely in this case that is a good thing?
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      Who says they're using the internet? There are many other technologies (Tux, MQ, X.25, MATIP, P1024, etc.) to choose from when exchanging data between remote hosts, and one can use IP technology and still not use the public internet. Some companies have their own internal IP networks, and dedicated point-to-point data lines are still very common in some industries.

      Commercial airlines and governments use "push" technology heavily, as they have been since the mid-1960's (and maybe even before). That's what
    • Yup. Push technology is completely dead. No one ever makes telephone calls. I can't remember the last time anyone ever sent an SMS message. Radio and television were stillborn. And only old people send emails. Certainly no one uses IM.
      • by MrNaz ( 730548 )
        Given that I said "That's what TV is for" I would have thought it'd be obvious that I was referring to push style broadcasting on the Internet, and that I am aware that unrequested incoming content (messages, telephones, television, radio etc). But this is /. so why am I expecting people to read what they comment on?
    • Push technology was going strong before you ever touched a computer, probably. It's called UUCP and it made USENET go round for a long, long time. Mind you, it was around before I ever SAW a computer :P
  • So what's changed? (Score:5, Informative)

    by jimicus ( 737525 ) on Friday October 06, 2006 @11:50AM (#16337239)
    Old system: US pulls 34 items of data about each passenger.
    New system: EU pushes 34 items of data about each passenger.

    Unless the data itself has dramatically changed, I really can't see any functional difference. So how is this any better?
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      nothing, it's just that they did not get their wish for even more data granted.

      personally I'd like to see proof that ANY effect has come out of this other than of course a massive breach of privacy.

      jacquesm posting on the road as AC
    • by Richard Steiner ( 1585 ) <rsteiner@visi.com> on Friday October 06, 2006 @11:56AM (#16337313) Homepage Journal
      Well, the US can't go rummaging around for unrelated information in the second case -- they only get what they're given.
    • by siljeal ( 841276 )
      The only change is that the whole thing is legal now. As if the US really gave much of a crap about European concerns regarding data protection. Calling this a 'deal' is weird enough, though. Or would you call it 'reaching a deal' if you gave a mugger the very wallet he demanded from you at gunpoint?
      • Re: (Score:1, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        The only change is that the whole thing is legal now.

        The previous agreement was claimed to be legal until the court pointed out that it plainly wasn't. This agreement is only legal until the court again (after a long and expensive process) points out that it plainly isn't.

        The only change is that it's changed. And that is the point.

      • How do you figure this deal was made at gun point? Nothing changed except how the data is moved. Don't you have anyhting better to do with your life than to blame the US for all evil in the world. I am not claiming that we are perfect, far from it but have you seen a video of a American cutting off the head of an innocent in the name of God or flying a jet into a skyscraper? I guess it won't matter in another 50 years or so when all of Europe is part of a muslim Caliphate. All the muslim fascists want is fo
        • by siljeal ( 841276 )
          >How do you figure this deal was made at gun point? The European side was quite interested in seeing landing rights upheld. And you are mistaken. The way the data was moved was not the only thing that's been changed. Easier access for other agencies is another change. And my dear DevilDoc I am not blaming the US for this. I am blaming our cowardly European negotiators for this. They should have stood up and said, "Well, let's see how long you guys can survive without any planes from Europe landing on U
          • If European planes stopped landing on US soil then how would you get to Disney Land or Las Vegas? Then we would cut off your imports and our security data and Europe would be left to bicker among theselves as how best to get back at the US while trying to appease the muslims. Yes this would hurt our economy but would most likey hurt your economies more since the EU ships in more than we ship out. So I don't see how it would have been an "interesting experience". I am sorry that your politicaians don't care
        • millions killed in Viet Nam
          100 of thousands killed in the illegal bombing of Cambodia
          supported terrorits in Nicaragua
          overthrew the democratically elected government in Guatemala and installed a bloody dictatorship
          same for Iran
          supported Iraq in the war it started with Iran and supplied targetting information for sadam's chemical weapons

          get your head out of the sand, this is just the tip of the iceberg
    • Unless the data itself has dramatically changed, I really can't see any functional difference.
      push and pull explained [netscape.com]
      • That does a good job of sort of explaining things, but it's in a web context while the datafeeds being described in the article are almost certainly not related to the web (or http) at all.

        Push datafeeds exist in several forms. Some require explict application-level acknowledgements for each message and employ multi-priority queueing mechanisms (allowing high-priority messages to be sent ahead of everyone else), while others simply push messages into the ether and efectively forget about them (a response m
      • by jimicus ( 737525 )
        I know what the difference between push and pull is.

        I just don't see how it makes the remotest difference in this context as the net result is the same - the same amount of information about the same number of people leaves the same countries under much the same terms - the only difference is how it does so.
    • by Decado ( 207907 ) on Friday October 06, 2006 @12:28PM (#16337761)

      RTFA Please

      The new system is better from an EU standpoint because the data is sent to a single secure source. They no longer have to worry about it being pulled from an untrusted source. There is no longer an external logon to the EU system that could potentially reveal private information. Instead it is pushed securely to a trusted homeland security site which is then responsible for distributing it within the US. Because the EU is no longer a risk for distributing private information it is OK within the EU. If there is a privacy breach it won't be the fault of the EU and that makes the EU authorities happy. From the standpoint of the consumer the same data still flies around but that was never the issue, the issue was that there was potential for the EU system to leak sensitive data which was unacceptable.

      • If there is a privacy breach it won't be the fault of the EU and that makes the EU authorities happy. From the standpoint of the consumer the same data still flies around but that was never the issue, the issue was that there was potential for the EU system to leak sensitive data which was unacceptable.

        I don't think you're correct. The issue was not only about an EU leak of information.

        Their strong privacy laws prohibit them from disseminating information to countries without strong privacy protections. It

      • the issue was that there was potential for the EU system to leak sensitive data which was unacceptable.

        Plausable deniability? There's no way that the data leak was OUR fault. Even though we were spineless and gave it to the US to begin with...

      • by jimicus ( 737525 )
        I did. AFAICT most of what you say is speculation based on it, because it certainly doesn't explain specifically why they think this is OK yet pulling the data isn't.

        EU data protection law, amongst other things, outlaws sending data to countries without similarly strong data protection law. So technically, it matters not how the data gets to the US, it's still illegal. This is just an agreement to effectively exempt the US from the law.

        Thing is, if you're going to start cooking up agreements to exempt ce
    • New system: EU pushes 34 items of data about each passenger.

      ... and agrees that the US DHS can share the data with the FBI, other govt agencies are supposed to get access in the future. Best part of it: German minister of justice welcomes the agreement, as a high level of data protection is maintained ... she therefore has no objections at all.

      Brigitte Zypries (SPD) begrüßte die Einigung zwischen EU und USA. "Es bleibt bei einem hohen Datenschutz-Niveau", sagte sie heute am Rande des EU-Justi [spiegel.de]

  • by digitalderbs ( 718388 ) on Friday October 06, 2006 @11:56AM (#16337311)
    The data fields can be found from this earlier article [bbc.co.uk].

    • Information about the passenger: name; address; date of birth; passport number; citizenship; sex; country of residence; US visa number (plus date and place issued); address while in the US; telephone numbers; e-mail address; frequent flyer miles flown; address on frequent flyer account; the passenger's history of not showing up for flights
    • Information about the booking of the ticket: date of reservation; date of intended travel; date ticket was issued; travel agency; travel agent; billing address; how the ticket was paid for (including credit card number); the ticket number; which organisation issued the ticket; whether the passenger bought the ticket at the airport just before the flight; whether the passenger has a definite booking or is on a waiting list; pricing information; a locator number on the computer reservation system; history of changes to the booking
    • Information about the flight itself: seat number; seat information (eg aisle or window); bag tag numbers; one-way or return flight; special requests, such as requests for special meals, for a wheelchair, or help for an unaccompanied minor
    • Information about the passenger's itinerary: other flights ticketed separately, or data on accommodation, car rental, rail reservations or tours.
    • Information about other people: the group the passenger is travelling with; the person who booked the ticket
    • frequent flyer miles flown;

      That's scary.

      the passenger's history of not showing up for flights

      Why do they want to know that?

      how the ticket was paid for (including credit card number)

      That's even scarier.

      whether the passenger bought the ticket at the airport just before the flight

      Because terrorists never plan anything out in advance, they just buy the ticket at the last minute, right? It seems like they want to know if this is a person fleeing from law enforcement.

      special requests, such as requests for specia
      • I'll try to think of justifications for the ones I can. Frequent flyer miles flown;

        Presumably frequent flyers are more likely to be businessmen

        the passenger's history of not showing up for flights

        Weird one this.

        how the ticket was paid for (including credit card number)

        Is a lot of tickets are bought witht he same CC, then I suppose this will show something. Or maybe they have some "suspicious" credit cards. That just makes it seem scarier.

        whether the passenger bought the ticket at the airp
        • the passenger's history of not showing up for flights

          Weird one this.

          It could be indicative of dry runs. If someone booked a LHR-JFK flight and then didn't turn up, then books another LHR-JFK flight for a week later on the exact same plane, alarm bells should be ringing.

          I bet they're only interested in the meal requests. But the terrorists know this. Best bet for terrorists is to opt for the vegetarian option. Unlikely to offend any dietry requirements and common enough in the western world that it would be
          • A serious terrorist would know this and plan operations in a style that fits a reasonably standard profile.

            True. I remember reading about a list of items that have been used for profiling drug smugglers. Since the smugglers knew about these signs and responded to them, items included disembarking first, last and in the middle, as well as travelling alone and in a group. Wish I could remember where I read about it.
          • When you are working in big projects you flight often to the same place, and often you have to miss flights due to last minute plans.

            Profiling does not work. It is hand weaving for the peanut gallery....
      • <blockquote><i>the passenger's history of not showing up for flights</i>

        Why do they want to know that?</blockquote>

        i'd guess so that if you don't always show up they can TRY to overbook the flight and get away with it, or give your seat away to standby passengers before boarding has started just to piss you off.
      • You just gotta love those evil, corrupt bastards that run the U.S. Government!

        Now that is a mental image I didn't need !

      • While I think this entire policy is unnecessary, one interesting thing that I recall from the previous article was that if your food preference could indicate religion it would not be revealed. For instance a request for hillal food would not be disclosed, but a request for vegetarian would be.
    • A person who has a long history of checking in his baggage, but then not boarding on flights that later mysteriously blew up?

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Fred_A ( 10934 )
        It's rather pointless anyway. Don't you have to say if you're a terrorist (and an ex-nazi, and if you came to attack the US government) on those little forms you get before landing in the US ? Seems much simpler to get it straight from the horse's mouth than trying to extrapolate from seating preferences. :)
    • email address? Why an email address? (rhetorical question of course)

      I always refuse to give my email (airlines sooner or later use it for spam) and if I have to, I always give: diespamdie@ Does this mean I'm screwed?
    • by Brobock ( 226116 )
      34 fields and not one asks for criminal convictions in their home country. In this globalized era, I am surprised that America doesn't demand this data (not that I want them to). I have personally been in trouble in my late teenage days and worry I will be denied entering other countries because of something I have done long ago and irrelavent to who I am today, but we do live in a world of collateral consequence [wikipedia.org] these days.

      I for one don't ever want countries to share this data unless it is serious enough
      • A lot of the information being provided is kept by airline reservation systems in the standard PNR (Passenger Name Record) for each passenger, anyway. Criminal conviction data is (probably) not.
  • by kcbrown ( 7426 ) <slashdot@sysexperts.com> on Friday October 06, 2006 @11:58AM (#16337349)

    Once the data leaves the hands of the EU, it is beyond the control of the EU. DHS can (and will, I'm sure) give it to anyone they want to. I have little reason to believe that won't include corporations that are willing to pay off the right people.

    So, really, how is this any better than what the U.S. was demanding to begin with, other than the fact that the EU gets to decide ahead of time whose data gets sent to the U.S.? For ordinary people, it seems to me that this is no different. Only people with "special" standing within the EU (i.e., those who have special connections to the people who decide what data goes out) will be protected.

    The actions of all governments with respect to the rights, liberties, and protections of the people have become so predictable that it's depressing. :-(

    • The actions of all governments with respect to the rights, liberties, and protections of the people have become so predictable that it's depressing. :-(

      Is it really surprising that you cannot travel anywhere you want without a passport/visa, etc? The passenger data they are getting is the same thing you would give to the airline when you book the flight.
      • by xoyoyo ( 949672 )
        But I didn't book my flight with the US government, so I don't really see why they need to know what my in-flight meal preference is.

        European governments (excluding the UK, which is superglued to the US's hindquarters) have no particlular objection to data collection, it's the processing and transmission that usually causes the problems. The US would like, for example, the EU passenger data to be transmitted to agencies that strictly have nothing to do with passport control such as the FBI. Given that nowhe
    • It's now going to US DHS, who are going to "facilitate" passing the data on to other security agencies, apparently. I'm sure we can all work out where this one is going to end.

      And yes, it does quite flagrantly violate the spirit of EU data protection laws, even if they've found a technicality to work around the letter. The correct response was to deny the US any information that isn't clearly necessary to allow them to take reasonable security precautions, and if the US threatened to deny landing rights,

    • While privacy is certainly a good thing, most likely the CIA and the NSA (and the spy agencies of other governments) already have a whole dossier of information on you, and no doubt that information ends up in the hands of corporations.

      Your own government collects tax information, occupational information, health care information, education information. This information is not kept secure the same way defense and security information is kept secure by your government, because it would be cost ineffective to
    • I find this a little odd. The Data Protection Acts in Europe essential follow the same kind of general pattern, i.e if you want to store information in a computer database then you have to register what information you are storing and why you are storing it, and you have to comply with certain conditions such as you will tell someone what information you hold about them if they ask and that you will correct any mistakes in that information.

      Now these rules apply to anyone who wishes to maintain databases on
      • That isn't the way the US government wants to operate. They want to be able to share all of the information with any government agency that might have some interest.

        The only reason it is even semi-legal is that the EU commissioner wrote a statement saying that he fully trusts the US government to comply with the data protection act, and there are no adverse privacy implications. This was written despite the US government refusing to comply with the conditions. Basically, the EU is saying "don't tell me

  • Frankly (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Timesprout ( 579035 ) on Friday October 06, 2006 @12:03PM (#16337419)
    We should just tell the US to go fuck themselves over the data and not travel there. If anything US airline security has been shown to be so poor we should be the one imposing the ridiculous restrictions on them coming here.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by dmatos ( 232892 )
      Troll? Maybe. Insightful? I think so.

      I'm personally boycotting any travel to the US for this and a myriad of other reasons. Apart from all the risks to my own personal liberty and freedom if I do happen to go there, there's the added fact that it's faster to fly to Europe than to the US (from Canada).

      When you add the four hours spent getting through security to the four hour flight, that pretty much equals the 1h security + 7h flight to Europe. And, you get to spend more of that time sitting down, rath
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by ev0l ( 87708 )
        I don't know where you live but I live in Toronto and fly to the states five or six times a year.

        In the Toronto Airport (YYZ) it usualy takes under thirty minutes to clear through both US customs (yes you clear through US customs while still in Canada) and security. A direct flight to Florida takes about 2 and a half hours.

        To be safe I usualy show up 90 minutes before my flight departs and usualy have about an hour wait when I get to the terminal.

        I don't know where you fly out of by 4 hours is absurd and I
      • by Malc ( 1751 )
        Really? I'm confused, the last two trips to California for me, I checked in at Pearson less than an hour before departure. I don't recommend checking in so soon before any flight, be it within Canada, to Europe or the US. It takes just as long for me to check-in for the US as it does for Europe - pre-clearing US immigration and customs has been very quick for me in four trips.

        I now have a Canadian passport, but last year I travelled to the US on my British one, the first time I'd tried in five years afte
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        I would probably agree with you about boycotting travelling to the US if I lived outside the US.

        But regarding your point about risks to your personal liberty and freedom if you come here; I have to point out that the EU is the one that collects this data on it's citzens in the first place.

        Isn't the EU also infringing on on their personal liberty and freedom?

        What about Canada? They have to do the same thing. Here's Air Canada's policy. Isn't your government infriging on your personal liberty and freedom as w
        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by Anonymous Coward
          Good point. I'ld wish more Europeans would realize the fault here lies not with the Americans asking for that data - it lies with European governments bending over when Bush tells them to. I second what someone posted above - the EU should tell the U.S. to go fuck itself and refuse to hand over any data. In fact, we should tell the U.S. to go fuck itself on general principles until the American public decides to return into the community of civilized nations and runs their insane moron in chief and his fuck
      • I refuse to be submitted to the insulting handling of US immigration. Not even Vietnam immigration people were as nasty as US immigration are.

        I could save money making stop overs in the US but I don't, I prefer to pay a bit more but to be treated with some respect and dignity.
    • ...If anything US airline security has been shown to be so poor we should be the one imposing the ridiculous restrictions on them coming here....

      I don't think any country or group has a monopoly on airport and/or airline security. See for example, this wikipedia list of airline hijackings [wikipedia.org], the hijackings seem distributed all over the world. Or consider the number of terrorist acts over the last couple of decades at various airports around the world. These include terrorist events in Germany and Italy.

    • i totally agree with you on this one, i guess you're not american either? (wait for the /. trolls to mod us down now)
    • by Jaeph ( 710098 )
      I find your comment bizarre. Before I let someone in my house, I ask who it is. This is a basic courtesy dating back to ancient times. This is no different, and there's a very real security threat to many people involved.

      Now, if the US refuses to reciprocate, then there's a problem. What's good for the goose is good for the gander, etc.


      P.S. Please do not read this as "the us is perfect, us security is perfect, etc". I'm only commenting on the exchange of information.
    • While I agree that the U.S. should drop all the security requirements it has on planes traveling to the U.S. (it doesn't improve security, and frustrates visiters to the U.S.), I think you must not be very well traveled if you think that U.S. security restrictions are very difficult to deal with, or U.S. security is bad. No-one is going to boycott the U.S. when E.U. citizens are treated far worse in other places. You are simply used to getting your news from U.S.-centric news sources (like Slashdot), and ar
      • I have been in places like Vietnam, Namibia, the Philippines and Indonesia (Suharto era) as well as many other more potable places. I have acquantices that have actually been to Burma (may their companies be shamed forevever).

        I can confidently say that US immigration is unpolite, aggressive and downright racist.

        As for security, it is similar to Europe now, but the US was the one that upgraded.

        I remeber my first travel to the US and watched in horror in the way back as they allowed pretty much anybody and hi
    • by BBird ( 664014 )
      I was planing a trip to Arizona
      and gave up (or at least postponed until
      2u leaves office).
    • by JimBobJoe ( 2758 )
      We should just tell the US to go fuck themselves over the data and not travel there

      I'm actually blown away that so many people are willing to travel voluntarily to the US based on the new laws. The first thing we do to everyone who isn't a Canadian or Mexican is photograph and fingerprint them. I wouldn't travel to any country that did that to me. (And I do support other countries doing it to US citizens until we stop doing it to their citizens.)

      This article [usatoday.com] implies that some tourists are already telling th
  • by thefirelane ( 586885 ) on Friday October 06, 2006 @12:08PM (#16337483)
    US: Hey EU, we need to talk about your Pieces of Information
    EU: Oh, is there a problem, I thought I was giving you the right number, 34 is the minimum right?
    US: Oh, yes, 34 is the minimum number of pieces of information, if you just want to do the minimum
    US: Look at Bulgaria over there, they give 54 pieces of information, don't you want to be like Bulgaria?
    EU: Look, if you want 54 pieces of information, just make the minimum 54
    US: I just want you to want to do more than the minimum

    Sorry, I forget the actual script, that's off the top of my head.
    • Yeah, good adaptation of "Office space" :)

      A side question - do you have any information about Bulgaria providing more info? As far as I know, there are no direct flights, so ...?
  • by ackthpt ( 218170 ) *

    In Soviet Russia^H^H^H^H EU airline reports YOU!

  • One saying "bend over" and the other one saying "please harder"?
    • No see, the US said "I'm just gonna take it from you and you're gonna like it," and the EU said, "You can't take it from me if I give it to you, you big stud!" and then wet slapping sounds were heard.
      • Oh great. You are aware that someone will pick this up and make up some cutscenes with EU and US politicians, and post something like this on YouTube, yes?

        Think of the children! Although... it would be soooo wrong with children... in other words, twice as likely to appear on YouTube.
  • by miffo.swe ( 547642 ) <daniel.hedblom@g m a il.com> on Friday October 06, 2006 @12:23PM (#16337689) Homepage Journal
    If the EU gets the same access to US databases im a ok with this. Somehow i suspect the US would never bend over and take it like that. Only the EU is so cowardly bent over for their new puppet lors.
    • Somehow i suspect the US would never bend over and take it like that

      Maybe not, but apparently they have no problem giving a reacharound. If you think for one minute that the US isn't allowing passenger data to go to the EU, then you're a little naive.

      The EU's concern was that the US would too freely share such information with non-terrorism-related agencies; the US has no such compunctions, and has no problem forking the information over to the EU.

      However, the EU doesn't currently have as much of a centr

    • by slew ( 2918 )
      Perhaps the EU doesn't actually want the US information, because then they'd be required to protect it (and who would want to go through all that trouble)...

      Besides, looking at that information would probably be too depressing for them anyhow, credit card numbers for maxed out credit cards, finding out how little US folks pay for flights, that they use AOL email, tolerate the "standard" coach airline meal, and are travelling on a generic 21 country Trafalgar tour. I think after looking at a few hundred tho
    • by Malc ( 1751 )
      You don't think that information is demanded by the UK? I recently booked a flight to the UK, and the airline's web site asked me if I wanted to give them my passport number then and there rather than at check-in time because I was going to a country that required extra information beforehand. I decided not to because I couldn't make up my mind which passport to use, and there's nothing like confusing people when you're a multi-national ;)
    • If the EU gets the same access to US databases im a ok with this. Somehow i suspect the US would never bend over and take it like that. Only the EU is so cowardly bent over for their new puppet lors.

      Well, it's either that or EU citizens won't be allowed to travel to the USA.
      It's the same with the Biometric Passports, and I don't think the EU has much of a choice here...

  • The U.S. will "twist" the information from the E.U. nipples, instead of "pulling" the information from the E.U. underwear.
  • Just some background info.
    Europe and US has a huge difference in privacy rights. In Europe the individual owns his own data. In the US the entity (read corporation) owns whatever they can collect (And sell).

    In Norway, for example, if you are unhappy with your credit rating, you just call them and tell them that they have to erase all data they have on you. (This will of course not result in a good score of course). Companies can not keep any information other than what is needed to complete a customer tr
    • No, Europeans don't have any such right to protect their information from their own governments. In Norway, you cannot demand that your government erases the information it keeps on you. European countries keep vast stores of private information on all its citizens. There is no way you can have a nationalized health care and education system, and government economic central planning, and a whole bunch of social controls and legislation, without the government collecting vast amounts of private data on its c
  • So, the USA thinks the following information will help them determine if I am a terrorist or not:
    • Whether or not I order a vegetarian or Kosher meal
    • My email address
    • The fact that I occupy a window or an aisle seat
    • The fact that I might want to go on a museum tour
    • That I missed a connecting flight in 2002

    Funny, but I don't see terrorists these days showing up to the airport to buy a one way ticket in cash, ordering a Halal meal, and pre booking a tour of The White House and The Capitol.

    IMHO they are

    • by l0b0 ( 803611 )
      This kind of data is invaluable to root out false positives when looking for suspicious / interesting patterns. E.g., you'll probably be less likely to think of someone as a terrorist if they asked for a wheelchair or anything else which would make them stand out in the relatively small crowd of a airline passengers. Other things, like booking shortly before the flight, indicates little planning. Each indicator gives a small nudge in one or the other direction (provided you have good reference data), and he
  • When governments collude, you and I lose rights.

    Well, I guess that isn't news: whenever governments to anything, you and I lose rights.
  • This looks very similar to "if you don't do it voluntarily, we'll force you".

    - RG>

Someday your prints will come. -- Kodak