Archive for the ‘full body scans’ Category

Susie Castillo retweeted our endosrsement of her campaign.

Please sign:: Susie’s TSA Petition to Congress  via 

Retweeted by  and 4 others

BTC – According to grassroots airline boycott organizer James Babb, recent TSA patdowns include “pushing into your testicles” and “squeezing your breasts”.  These accounts are some of the reasons why he and his family are telling airlines “We Won’t Fly“.

In instances like this, one always has more questions than answers as to why the feds can’t just focus on actual terrorist threats vs. invasive national dragnet strategies. If you are already at the ENOUGH level, you may be considering an airline boycott this season by opting to drive or use alternate transport.

More independent grassroots groups, just like We Won’t Fly[.com], have been springing up around the country since the UPS terror threat.  Despite coverage in national media, there are still transport workers and passengers who don’t understand the risks involved with using the virtual strip search machines installed in airports.

We interviewed James Babb about his approach to an airline boycott this Thanksgiving and how We Won’t Fly is working to inform others about common privacy concerns.  [Witness the entrepenurs at work!]


OMAHA, Neb. — Omaha’s Eppley Airfield now has a full-body scanner that will allow security officers to effectively see through a passenger’s clothes during screening.

The Transportation Security Administration demonstrated the new imaging technology Monday, a day before the scanner was to go into use. By mid-June, Eppley is expected to have two of the body-scanning machines that the American Civil Liberties Union has complained can violate a passenger’s privacy.

The TSA has been deploying the technology in an effort to ensure that airports can detect hidden explosives and other weapons. The machines use low-dose x-rays aimed at a passenger’s chest and back to create an image showing what’s under the passenger’s clothing.

But TSA officials say they have taken precautions to protect passenger privacy. Genital and facial areas are automatically obscured, and passengers have the right to opt out of a full-body scan for a more intense but traditional pat down.

TSA officials have said the units won’t be able to print or store images, and that the officer viewing them won’t have direct contact with passengers. The officer viewing the scans remotely will radio an all-clear to another officer standing with the passenger.

But the ACLU has denounced the new screening machines as a “virtual strip search.”
The new Omaha scanner is one of about 150 that were bought with federal stimulus money. The new machines will join 40 other scanners already in use, and the TSA plans to buy at least 300 more scanners for use at airports nationwide.

NBCMiami >>RawStory

Perhaps the new airport body scanners are a bit too revealing.

A TSA worker in Miami was arrested for aggravated battery after police say he attacked a colleague who’d made fun of his small genitalia after he walked through one of the new high-tech security scanners during a recent training session.

Rolando Negrin, 44, was busted for assault after things got ugly at Miami International Airport between Negrin and some of his fellow Transportation Security Administration workers on Tuesday. Sources say Negrin stepped into the machine during the training session and became embarrassed and angry when a supervisor started cracking jokes about his manhood, made visible by the new machine.

KANSAS CITY – BTC- Sidewalk sign waves can be a thankless dish of humble pie. However, the brave souls of Missouri’s liberty activist strongholds are [so mmmm…Heavy Metal?] that they held the attention anchor of at least three televised news services.

I especially loved the pre-teen standing out there with the sign that says,

11 new scanners have been dispersed over America.  It’s 11 more than we ever intended to deal with.

Liberty Restoration Project keeps on rocking for a free-world. And here are the news totals  c/o Kansas City LOLA, Tracy Ward:

St. Joe Channel – Nextstar 
The Pitch [Misery alt news rag]
Tony’s Kansas City  [HOT SCANNER PIC]

Contrary to public statements made by the Transportation Security Administration, full-body airport scanners do have the ability to store and transmit images, according to documents obtained by the Electronic Privacy Information Center.

The documents, which include technical specifications and vendor contracts, indicate that the TSA requires vendors to provide equipment that can store and send images of screened passengers when in testing mode, according to CNN.

The TSA has stated publicly on its website, in videos and in statements to the press that images cannot be stored on the machines and that images are deleted from the scanners once an airport operator has examined them. The administration has also insisted that the machines are incapable of sending images.

But a TSA official acknowledged to CNN that the machines do have these capabilities when set to “test mode.”

The official said these functions are disabled before the machines are delivered to airports and that there is no way for screeners in airports to put the machines into test mode to enable the functions. The official, however, would not elaborate on what specific protections, if any, are in place to prevent airport personnel from putting the machines in test mode.

The TSA also asserts that the machines are not networked, so they cannot be accessed by hackers.

c/o Transect blog

By Quinn
I’ve seen a lot of talk about full-body scans on CNN, but it took William Saletan’s piece over on Slate advocating the use of full-body scans in order to protect from terrorists like Abdulmuttalib to push me to write about this.

The lack of consideration for the side-effects of a mandatory, uniform full-body scan policy is absurd.

Now, I actually agree with one of Saletan’s major points – that people should get over their hang-ups about other people seeing their entire bodies. Puritanism is so last century (and last decade). I also certainly appreciate that many people worry about their security on flights.

However, the statistical likelihood of being caught in a terrorist attack is quite low – so low that I can’t imagine how the loss of efficiency in the security process or the invasiveness of the procedure can find a counter-balance in “preventing terrorist attacks.” We’ve already done quite a bit in terms of making it difficult for terrorists to pull off an attack. Anything more just leads to diminishing returns. Saletan seems to think a continual escalation – like an “arms race” – is what’s necessary to keep people safe. But there comes a point at which more security measures won’t actually much of anything to deter attacks.

More to the point, this particular attack was a failure of intelligence, which just didn’t get its act together. Perhaps it might be better to address intelligence rather than airport security.

Previous moves, including requiring gender markers on tickets and ID issues, have already made travel unappealing for trans people. But full-body scans are beyond what’s even potentially justifiable. This will out trans people left and right. In a transphobic society, this puts too many people at risk for harassment. I’m sorry – I don’t trust U.S. TSA or any law enforcement agency not to give me crap for being trans. They have the power to pull me aside for even more scrutiny or say that I’m not who I present myself as. Or pull some madness like assuming that my trans-ness is a disguise for terrorist activity. Or just harass me – since law enforcement officials can be bigots just as much as anyone else.

And don’t even get me started on how this violates the religious liberty of people who do believe in modesty as a matter of faith, even though I generally don’t agree with them. This really won’t help relations with Islam.

The U.S. needs to catch itself before setting up full-body scanners everywhere. And, if it doesn’t, no country that seriously respects the privacy of its citizens should cooperate with the U.S. if asked to use full-body scans – including the Netherlands (and Nigeria) and Canada. The consequence is effectively deterring me – an otherwise law-abiding person – from air travel, along with an uncounted number of people like me.

We need to ask more questions about full-body scans than what Saletan has mentioned – or what the talking heads on CNN are blathering about. Do we really want to punish many innocents to catch the few guilty? Do we really want to make it impossible for some marginalized communities to fly for the sake of “mainstream” society? And do we really want to enact extreme measures in response to an attempt at terrorism that didn’t even succeed?