The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) in USA is going to install see through body scanners at ten busiest airports for security purpose. The scanner can see beneath clothing to detect weapons.
Although the machine operator cannot see the person’s face, and all images are instantly deleted, not everyone is in favour of this idea.
Airports in Los Angeles, Baltimore, Denver, Albuquerque and New York have already got this machine installed and authorities are scanning randomly choosing passengers. Airports in Dallas, Detroit, Las Vegas and Miami will have this machine in a few days bringing the total to 38 machines.
Passengers can decline to go through a scanner, but they will face a pat-down.
James Schear, the TSA security director at Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport said:
It’s the wave of the future. We’re just scratching the surface of what we can do with whole-body imaging.
Some of the airports have two body scanners at one checkpoint like in the case of Thurgood Marshall Airport.
After successful testing these machines will eventually replace metal detectors at the nation’s 2,000 airport checkpoints and the pat-downs done on passengers who need extra screening.
The TSA effort could encourage scanners’ use in rail stations, arenas and office New HP LaserJet P4014n Printer Starting at $699 after $100 instant savings. buildings, the American Civil Liberties Union said.
According to Barry Steinhardt, head of the ACLU technology project:
This may well set a precedent that others will follow.
The scanners bounce harmless “millimeter waves” off passengers who are selected to stand inside a portal with arms raised after clearing the metal detector. A TSA screener in a nearby room views the black-and-white image and looks for objects on a screen that are shaded differently from the body. Finding a suspicious object, a screener radios a colleague at the checkpoint to search the passenger.
The TSA says it protects privacy by blurring passengers’ faces and deleting images right after viewing. Yet the images are detailed, clearly showing a person’s gender. “You can actually see the sweat on someone’s back,” Schear said.
Clark Kent Ervin, the former Homeland Security inspector general said:
I’m delighted by this development. This really is the ultimate answer to increasing screeners’ ability to spot concealed weapons.
Passengers who went through a scanner at the Baltimore airport last week were intrigued, reassured and occasionally wary. The process took about 30 seconds on average.
One of the passenger Eileen Reardon of Baltimore looked startled. She said:
Some of this stuff seems a little crazy, but in this day and age, you have to go along with it.
The scanners do a good job seeing under clothing but cannot see through plastic or rubber materials that resemble skin.