November 20, 2010 |
The deployment of body scanners at U.S. airports is rightly controversial. The devices raise very important privacy issues, and possibly health issues as well, both of which The Times' Nov. 17 editorial "Shut up and be scanned" says are outweighed by security concerns. One downside to this debate, however, is that it distracts us somewhat from asking important questions about the Transportation Security Administration's approach to security overall. The scanners are part and parcel of what has become an unsustainable security strategy; that is, treating each and every passenger, whether an infant child or a uniformed crew member, as a potential terrorist, while attempting to inspect their bodies and belongings for each and every possible weapon.
July 20, 2011 |
Full-body scanners at airport security checkpoints will no longer display explicit "person-specific images" under new technology being phased in nationwide, according to a statement Wednesday by the Transportation Security Administration. Instead, a software upgrade for the machines will show a generic body outline. Critics have pointed to explicit scanned images as a virtual "strip search" and a violation of passengers' privacy ever since the full-body scanners were phased in last year.
November 17, 2011 |
X-ray body scanners used by the Transportation Security Administration at airports around the country are back in the news. The European Union on Monday banned the machines, also known as backscatters, at European airports over concerns that they might be linked to cancer. The investigative news organization Pro Publica reported earlier this month that research shows radiation emitted by the machines could lead to a small number of cancer cases , findings it says the TSA "glossed over" in assessing the safety of the machines.
October 19, 2011 |
The Transportation Security Administration plans to install full-body scanners to screen passengers at John Wayne Airport in the coming months, federal officials confirmed Tuesday. Scanners are planned for security checkpoints at all three terminals, including the new Terminal C set to open in November. Travelers randomly selected to undergo the body scans can opt to walk through the traditional metal detectors and receive a manual pat-down instead, according to the Daily Pilot. A recent public backlash about the machines' graphic depictions prompted the TSA to alter the images the scanners produce.
July 21, 2010 |
Federal and city officials Tuesday unveiled the addition of two full-body scanners at Los Angeles International Airport as part of a plan to install the high-tech screeners at every terminal there over the next few months. Two units — each about the size of a refrigerator — have already been in use at the airport's Tom Bradley International Terminal. The new units unveiled Tuesday are in Terminal 6 serving United, Continental, JetBlue and other carriers. Officials from the city of Los Angeles and the Transportation Security Administration vowed to press for scanners at each of the nine terminals.
June 12, 2010 |
As the government begins deploying whole-body imaging machines to replace metal detectors at airports nationwide, some security experts worry that the new technology could make it easier, not harder, to sneak weapons and explosives onto airplanes. In the wake of the attempted Christmas Day airline bombing, the Transportation Security Administration decided to double its investment in the new machines, with a goal of installing 450 across the country by the end of the year and 1,800 by 2014.