recommended reading

More Airport Body Scans


By Emily Long March 8, 2010

recent posts

The Homeland Security Department on Friday announced that it will expand the use of advanced imaging technology -- the controversial body scans -- to 11 U.S. airports, thanks to $1 billion in Recovery Act funds.

The units go beyond the capability of metal detectors to pick up explosives, weapons and nonmetallic threats hidden underneath clothing. Though the Transportation Security Administration promises passenger privacy through blurred imaging and remote viewing, privacy advocates have raised concerns that the scans reveal anatomical features and are stored, not deleted as TSA claims. The Electronic Privacy Information Center, a public interest research group, published documents in January revealing that the machines can record, store and transmit passenger scans.

The American Civil Liberties Union, which has called the technology a "virtual strip search," questioned the efficacy and privacy implications of the scanners' expanded use.

"The Bill of Rights extends beyond curbside check-in and if the government insists on using these invasive search techniques, it is imperative that there be vigorous oversight and regulation to protect our privacy," said Laura W. Murphy, director of the ACLU Washington Legislative Office in a statement. "Before these body scanners become the status quo at America's airports, we need to ensure new security technologies are genuinely effective, rather than merely creating a false sense of security."

Of the 11 airports chosen, only Los Angeles International already has similar technology in place.

  • Boston Logan International
  • Charlotte Douglas International
  • Chicago O'Hare International
  • Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International
  • Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International
  • Kansas City International
  • Los Angeles International
  • Mineta San José International
  • Oakland International
  • Port Columbus International
  • San Diego International

The first screeners were installed Friday at Boston Logan International. Chicago O'Hare International will receive units this week, and the remaining locations will be up and running this summer. TSA already has 40 units in 19 airports nationwide and expects to have an additional 450 deployed by the end of 2010.


Close [ x ] More from Nextgov

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Modernizing IT for Mission Success

    Surveying Federal and Defense Leaders on Priorities and Challenges at the Tactical Edge

  • Communicating Innovation in Federal Government

    Federal Government spending on ‘obsolete technology’ continues to increase. Supporting the twin pillars of improved digital service delivery for citizens on the one hand, and the increasingly optimized and flexible working practices for federal employees on the other, are neither easy nor inexpensive tasks. This whitepaper explores how federal agencies can leverage the value of existing agency technology assets while offering IT leaders the ability to implement the kind of employee productivity, citizen service improvements and security demanded by federal oversight.

  • Effective Ransomware Response

    This whitepaper provides an overview and understanding of ransomware and how to successfully combat it.

  • Forecasting Cloud's Future

    Conversations with Federal, State, and Local Technology Leaders on Cloud-Driven Digital Transformation

  • IT Transformation Trends: Flash Storage as a Strategic IT Asset

    MIT Technology Review: Flash Storage As a Strategic IT Asset For the first time in decades, IT leaders now consider all-flash storage as a strategic IT asset. IT has become a new operating model that enables self-service with high performance, density and resiliency. It also offers the self-service agility of the public cloud combined with the security, performance, and cost-effectiveness of a private cloud. Download this MIT Technology Review paper to learn more about how all-flash storage is transforming the data center.


When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.