1Password's 'Travel Mode' hides devices' data when you're entering another country

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Password-management service 1Password has updated its app so that it now temporarily disables and removes all passwords, cards, and other data from a user’s device when they choose to do so. The feature is called “Travel Mode,” and as the name suggests, it’s targeted at people worried about running into trouble when they’re crossing a border into a new country.

The idea is that the feature will prevent law enforcement from being able to perform unwarranted searches into a user’s account. By nature, 1Password stores a ton of personal data — and much of it is information that the device’s owner might not want anyone to be able to access. According to 1Password, people are increasingly being told to hand over their phones at the border, and many are even told to unlock the device.

“It protects your 1Password data from unwarranted searches when you travel. When you turn on Travel Mode, every vault will be removed from your devices except for the ones marked ‘safe for travel.’ All it takes is a single click to travel with confidence,” said 1Password in a blog post.

Travel Mode does require some work. You’ll have to go through your accounts and data to mark some of it as “Safe for Travel.” Anything that’s not marked safe will be pulled from the device until Travel Mode is turned off, at which point the data will return to the device. There is a necessary downside — while Travel Mode is on, you won’t be able to access your passwords and data. It’s important to note here that the data isn’t just hidden — it’s totally wiped from the device.

Travel Mode is limited to 1Password subscribers, and not those who have bought the app outright without a subscription. In general, 1Password seems to be increasingly focusing on its subscription service.

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