Sep 09 2009

More travel records, more exemptions from the Privacy Act

An anonymous traveler has posted the records of their international travel that were provided by the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) division of the Department of Homeland Security, in response to a request under the Privacy act using these forms updated from those used by the Identity Project in our original investigation of the CBP “Automated Targeting System” (ATS).  As noted by, which published the latest example of the government’s travel data vacuum cleaner, as provided by one of the site’s readers,

The document reveals that the DHS is storing the reader’s:

  • Credit card number and expiration (really)
  • IP address used to make web travel reservations
  • Hotel information and itinerary
  • Full Name, birth date and passport number
  • Full airline itinerary, including flight numbers and seat numbers
  • Cruise ship itinerary
  • Phone numbers, incl. business, home & cell
  • Every frequent flyer and hotel number associated with the subject, even ones not used for the specific reservation

There are also the details of a reservation at a hotel the person didn’t end up staying at, but which they had a reservation for when the CBP pulled a snapshot of their PNR from the airline or CRS. Sadly, all this is typical of what’s in a PNR and what we found in our continuing investigation of CBP/DHS travel records.

Meanwhile, even as more travelers are finally getting portions of their travel records, the DHS published a new final rule on August 31, 2009 (74 Federal Register 45070-45072) exempting portions of those records from the Privacy Act. Read More