Doubts Re. Airport Body Scanners

After the attempted airline bombing on Christmas day, the U.S. government’s Transportation Security Administration doubled its investment of whole-body imaging machines that are replacing metal detectors at airports across the country. Meanwhile new concerns are arising on the effectiveness of the machines.

In an article on the Los Angeles Times website, Ken Dilanian of the Tribune Washington Bureau says aviation security experts claim the scanners may help detect non-metallic weapons but won’t do as good a job at detecting the kinds of items metal detectors can catch.

“… some security experts worry that the new technology could make it easier, not harder, to sneak weapons and explosives onto airplanes,” Dilanian writes.

Critics have expressed privacy concerns and likened the whole-body scanners to a virtual strip search, and government has addressed these issues, but the Transportation Security Administration has yet to ease the concerns about security.

Rafi Sela, former chief security officer at the Israel Airport Authority, said, “I can overcome the body scanners with enough explosives to bring down a Boeing 747. And Rich Roth, a former Secret Service official now with Maryland-based CTI Consulting said, “The things it can miss are more likely to be used as a weapon than the things it can catch.”

To read the LA Times article, click here: 
http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-body-imagers-20100611,0,7734605,print.story