Saturday, December 02, 2006

Virtual strip search coming your way

I first covered this story a year and a half ago when Chertoff pronounced he was going to install these x-ray machines in airports and "doesn't want an 'endless debate' over privacy issues." Well, just in time for the holidays, the TSA announced that one machine will be up and running at Sky Harbor's Terminal 4 by Christmas. They're expected to be installed in other selected airports on trial basis by early 2007.

I find it interesting that the agency isn't going to release information on the technology until later in the month. Could that be because...
The $100,000 machines bounce low-radiation X-rays off a person's skin to produce photo-like computer images of metal, plastic and organic materials hidden under clothes, says American Science and Engineering. The TSA is testing its BodySearch machine.
What with all that radiation poisoning the news, it's probably not a good time to tell people they're about to subject to searches that requires the use of it. What else they won't tell you is this system has almost nothing to do with terrorism. It's about finding drugs. Customs already uses it on suspected drug mules and it's used in prisons for drug detection.

They've figured out how to blur nipples and pubic hair to make the virtual strip search more palatable to the public and for now it's only going to used as a secondary search method, with an option for a pat down instead. But it's only a matter of time before we all will be expected to march through one to get on a plane. They won't catch any terrorists, and we'll all be treated like criminals.

Between that and the latest super secret domestic surveillance program, assigning a terrorist rating to every US citizen who has crossed a border since 2002, it's getting hard to call this a democracy anymore.
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Anonymous romunov said...

Are nude beaches legal over there? How about bikinis?

2:28:00 AM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

I don't if they're legal Romunov. I know that a few exist but public nudity is certainly illegal. I assume the question about bikinis is rhetorical.

8:43:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh...I'm sad. Beat me to the punch again! :-)

3:25:00 AM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

But you're always funnier than me Kvatch. I seem to have lost my sense of humor in the last six years.

8:17:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks Libby. Flattery will get you I linked your post in!

9:15:00 AM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

LOL. Thanks for the encouragement Kvatch.

9:34:00 AM  
Anonymous Electrical Engineer said...

This scares the crap out of me. If the military is willing to make this technology public, the technology that is not public is what scares me. I can tell you from experience, that if the government has this technology and are willing to disclose it, they can already see into our homes from planes or satellites. When will it stop? It will stop when the people of the US demand the discloser of the ten year technology gap. We must make a stand.

1:07:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

I'm with you electrical engineer. The time to stop them is now.

1:23:00 PM  

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