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New airport scanners being tested

posted 4/20/2008 7:30:45 PM |
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New technology is being tested in New York and L.A.

Somewhat a precedent to Total Recall

This from CBS news:

(CBS) It wasn’t that long ago when this kind of airport security was the stuff of Hollywood fantasy, reports CBS News Correspondent Lee Cowan.

But that fantasy has now become a bare bones fact.

Ever since terrorist Richard Reid tried to detonate a bomb hidden in his shoes, the government has been searching for a faster, more efficient way to detect plastic explosives.

“The technology we’re using today, in some cases, can take 12 seconds to do a scan,” says Randal Null, Chief Technology Officer of the Transportation Security Administration. “We’d like to drive that down to a few seconds.”

So now, instead of looking at your shoes, Null says, “we are actually going to do a full body scan of an individual.”

Airport security screeners have the ability to take the shirt right off your back, “so all anatomical features are shown,” says Null.

It’s called Backscatter X-ray — low levels of radiation that could deliver high levels of embarrassment at airports all across the country.

Cowan demonstrated what its going to end up showing folks to Diane Marsh who says, shaking her head, “Oh no. I don’t like that. No I wouldn’t like that.”

Stacey and Elliot Goldstein of New York feel the same way.

“You feel like strangers are really looking at you,” Stacey says. “I don't know; it would really creep me out.”

But would you rather be patted down or would you rather go through this?

The $200,000 machine has already been tested at Orlando's International airport — where the x-rays of men were even more revealing.

Even the manufacturer was a little surprised at the clarity of some of its images and is now trying to do something to cover them up -- coming up with something the company calls an “electronic fig leaf.” But even without it, some passengers say it's okay to bare all.

Tanya Van Dorn from New York says she would be okay with that, “as long as they’re not saving it and putting it on the Internet.”

Miriam Schwarz agrees. “It’s not nice, but I guess in the world we live in today, it probably has to be.”

For now, the only thing passengers will have to continue to bare is their feet — a temporary fix to a problem some wish couldn't be so 'clearly' solved.
Story Here
Yahoo News Video

I saw this story break around a year ago, when the technology was first unveiled. And is stirring quite the controversy, both for and against.
Personally, I am for it. There are a lot of new and inventive ways to make weapons and explosive devices these days, all of other materials than metals. Plastics and ceramics are two of the main materials used. I say as terrorism advances, we all must advance to meet it as well.

What say you all?

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Apr 20 @ 7:40PM  
This is one of those things that I find many pro's and con's to. Yes I understand your stand. However, what happened to privacy? I have nothing to hide so no it doesn't really bother me. On the other hand, whether or not I have anything to hide, do I not have a right to privacy? I have done nothing wrong and intend to do nothing wrong...

It's a lot like the Patriot Act... wishy washy!

Apr 20 @ 7:40PM  
yes...our freedoms are being taken away, but it is for our safety. many of us are so lucky we haven't been involved, but you have to morn for the families and people with friends whom have...

Apr 20 @ 7:43PM  
Let me see...when I weigh my modesty against my life, and the lives of ain't like those screeners ain't never "seen it before". And in today's world....I'd rather have that than run the risk of another 9/11 or worse.

Apr 20 @ 7:47PM  
Hell its just skin, they are the ones more likely to get scared if they do look though.

Apr 20 @ 7:54PM  
Thank you for the information Akri. I know that you will keep me safe if ever anything threatened my safety.

Oh, the joys have having your own Knight Errant at your beck and call LOL


Apr 20 @ 8:02PM  
"They that can give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty or safety"-Benjamin Franklin
Scanners to detect explosives-yes, they all give off residue. Full body scans-no. Yes, weapons can be made of ceramic, but a pen or CD can be a lethal weapon in the right hands too. Don't want to get in an argument DK, just respectfully expressing my view. If I'm on a plane, and a guy has a knife and trying to take over, I'll take the cuts/stabs to defend myself and others. I am willing to take that responsibility. We cannot be sheep in the face of danger.

Apr 20 @ 8:11PM  
If everyone would somehow take a step back in time and remember. The tragedy of 9/11 wasn't caused by some secret weapon unknown to anyone. It was simple and deadly efficient. Our response, to that simplicity has been and continues to be to give up more of our privacy, more of our rights. More fear of the sky is falling, the boogie man. We need to do this because of something someone might do, according to "our" government.

I say Bullshit. I'm an American, a veteran, I work, I pay my taxes, I try to do the right things. So f I fly I'm under some sort of suspicion? I need to be checked out? Political correctness seems to demand that I have to be as of a suspect as the next person, ( who, ain't from around here.).

I vote to stop this giving up anything that I have left in the way of rights or privacy. Instead lets let the "terrorists know without a doubt. If you come here, if you attack us. we will not only send you to your "God". We will send everyone you know, everyone they know, to that same "God". And... we will do it from the comfort of an arm chair deep in a bunker right here in the Good Old U.S. A..

Apr 20 @ 8:34PM  
I am for it...if it keeps us safe what's a little modesty. Tease.

Apr 20 @ 8:36PM  
This is a tough, I have nothing to hide.....yes, it is just skin......yes, they (the ones scanning) have seen it before.....BUT they ain't seen mine before and I'm not sure I want them to.

I understand the need for security but will this really be that much better than what they had before.

And...what about kids and such....should some guy or a woman be allowed to see kids disrobed albeit virtually? I see potential problems here.
And...while it maybe no big deal for some to be virtually disrobed....there are others who would be mortified/horrified/humiliated by such a procedure.

I want to be safe but do I want to be stripped (virtually or otherwise) of my rights/clothing or dignity

And after this....what's next?

Apr 20 @ 8:57PM  
True story Happened this morning.

Was coming home from DKW house, was in Boise Airport. I was carrying my Camera bag and my purse and one magazine. Walked up to the scanner, took off my shoes, place everything in two bins and walked through the metal detectors. Nothing buzzed so I walk over to the conveyor. 3 TSA ladies were gathered around the screen looking at my camera bag through the monitor. When I told them just to hand check it, because the Lens I use gives a strange reading, (long black cylinder) The lady told me they had to bring it over and check the bag. I told her fine, the battery was good, if She checked the picture she'd see photo's of the Rockie Mountains. She said, "Not that kind of check" and proceeded to wipe it down with some cotton pads and putting them in a scanner. When I asked her what she was looking for she told me chemical powder residue, I told her I didn't even smoke cigarettes.

Now tell me, How did they go from not knowing what my camera lens was to Drug powder in less than 2 minutes I will never know. And then she didn't put the thing back in the case correctly. I think they need just cause. And that wasn't just cause.

Sorry Akri for jumping on your parade. But there is a line that doesn't need to be crossed.



Apr 20 @ 9:28PM  
It wasn't drug powder they were scanning for doll.. it was chemical residue from explosives. When they suspect you of drugs they bring in the dogs.

Apr 20 @ 9:30PM  
Maybe I should have taken their pictures. or turned the all into Frogs. LOL

Ok, It was still stupid, the damn thing was working. And they weren't the first person to question my camera.

Thanks doll


Apr 21 @ 2:23AM  
Thank you all for the comments.

I really feel its a no win scenario. I have fought for the US to have its rights, yet often terrorists prey and bank upon those same rights to do their thing.

They truly caught us all of guard on 9/11. Always before it was a hijack, and most often quietly doing what was ordered got you little more than a day or two of waiting till they got captured. Most times that was only on foreign flights because those had the fuel to go to other countries. But now, who knows their agendas?

And I agree with Shien. Flight gets jacked while im on it, first thing I am gonna think of is somewhere on that plane is an armed marshall. And I will be one of the first to climb right up a terrorists ass, so he has time to finish the job.

As for the machine, I dont see much way to stop that happening. And beins I am not going to have anything on me to worry over, 15 seconds of delay aint worth botherin over.

As for my ederas little run-in, my feeling was that it was a slow day for security, they were gettin inspected, or they just got burned in an inspection. Boise is a rinkydink airport, nowhere close to any type of hub or serious target, so they were just being pricks. Again, a no win situation, because the week before I flew out here to move the last time from Chicago, they got burned by an inspector who successfully carried 3 pounds of C4 ( plastic explosive ) ALL the way through O'Hare....scary thought.

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New airport scanners being tested