In the news this morning, US Department of Homeland Security regulations allow them to confiscate laptops at the border, or duplicate any data, without any suspicion of wrongdoing on the part of the laptop’s owner.
It’s a very timely move by the DHS. You never know when someone might invent a global, unregulated data network that could allow evildoers to entirely bypass such checkpoints, making them nothing more than a sham way for border police to rake through people’s private data and copy their mp3 collections.
The scary thing is I don't really see a way to defend against this. Even if you take the nuclear option and wipe everything, putting it online, and cross the border with a squeaky-clean laptop, there's still a chance your hardware gets confiscated. I wonder if travel insurance would cover seizure of hardware by foreign customs?