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Tag: TSA

Math is Hard: TSA Botched Radiation Levels on Body Scanners

The TSA says it will be re-testing hundreds of airport body scanners after its last round of tests found radiation levels 10 times higher than expected -- a number the agency chalked up to a calculation error. "We understand it as a calculation error," TSA spokesman Sarah Horowitz told Wired, before explaining how difficult it can be to remember to divide by the number of units tested. The...

'Avatar' Brings Lie Detector Tests to Airport Security Lines

Forget full-body scans and pat-downs at airports. Get ready for the automated lie detector test. Researchers at the University of Arizona are currently working on a machine known as the Automated Virtual Agent for Truth Assessments in Real-time, or 'Avatar.' Though it's only about the size of an ATM machine, Avatar can apparently pick up on the kind of physiological nuances and quirks that...

TSA Tests New, Less Invasive Full Body Scanner at Select Airports

Yesterday, the TSA introduced new software for airport security body scanners, in an attempt to enhance traveler privacy without sacrificing air travel safety. Unlike other full body scans, the new software only displays images of generic male and female figures, and not revealing, detailed images of individual passengers. If the system detects something suspicious, screeners will be shown...

Scientist Says He Found Alternative to TSA Body Scanners Four Years Ago

The TSA seems to think that aggressive pat-downs and full-body scans are the only way to protect America from terrorists, but a guy named Willard "Bill" Wattenburg thinks he found an alternative -- four years ago. Wattenburg says he first heard of the TSA's plans to buy new "backscatter" full-body scanners in 2006, while working as a researcher at Lawrence Livermore National Library in...

Hate the Body Scanners? Protect Your Privates With Radiation-Blocking Briefs

No matter what side of the body-scanner fence you call home -- the Righteous Nation of Hands Off Our Junk, or the Republic of Poor TSA Workers Forced to Look at and/or Fondle Your Bits -- you should now know that the saturation point has been reached (even before National Opt Out Day!), and that we have entered the realm of self-parody. How can we tell? Well, now the tinfoil hat inventors have...

New York Lawmakers Try to Ban Body Scanners From Airports

If city councilman David Greenfield gets his way, travelers passing through New York City airports will no longer be required to walk through body scanners before boarding their flights. Yesterday, Greenfield and six other council members introduced a legislative proposal which would prohibit all New York City-based TSA employees from using Advanced Imaging Technology, capable of seeing through a...

TSA Bans Large Printer Cartridges From Passenger Flights

If you were planning on traveling with a suitcase full of printer cartridges, we've got some bad news. The TSA has decided to ban printer and toner cartridges that weigh more than 16 ounces from both carry-on and checked luggage on all flights bound for U.S. destinations. But it shouldn't surprise you to learn of the new prohibition, considering the bomb scare two weeks ago. Explosive devices...

Florida Courthouse Stored 35,000 Body-Scan Images

More flip-flopping on the body-scanning debate: even though the Transportation Security Administration has roundly decreed that the millimeter-wave systems in use at several major airports do not store images of your naked bulk, the U.S. Marshals Service just admitted that it had saved "approximately 35,314 images" from a single Orlando, Florida courthouse, according to CNN. Whoops! This...

Airport Body Scanners 'Contradict Islam,' Dubai Refuses to Employ

Dubai, the Las-Vegas-of-the-Middle-East-turned-economic-wasteland, is rejecting full-body scanners at its airports because they "contradict Islam," according to Brigadier Pilot Ahmad Mohammad Bin Thani, who is the head of airport security for Dubai police. Concerned about the "privacy of individuals and their personal freedom," Bin Thani remarked to the Associated Free Press that Dubai will use...

'Clear' Airport Line-Skipping Service Set for Fall Comeback

Last summer, Verified Identity Pass's (VIP) Clear -- a service that allowed travelers to bypass airport security checkpoints for a yearly fee -- went bankrupt overnight, and closed its doors. But according to a press release, the company has been purchased by new owners and they hope to revive the service in the fall. According to Gadling, AlClear, which recently purchased the assets for $6...

Digg CEO Stepping Down, Microsoft's 'Pink' Phone Project

Highlights from this morning's other big tech headlines.... At last month's SXSW extravaganza, Digg CEO Jay Adelson outlined a dramatic, upcoming site redesign that, he said, would represent the culmination of five years' work. Now that the project is almost complete, Adelson is apparently feeling some wanderlust, as he has announced his imminent departure from the site. In a blog statement,...

TSA Wants to Use Bluetooth at Checkpoints to Follow Fliers' Phones

Share In an effort to make air travel more efficient, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is looking into tracking travelers' cell phones. Naturally, this has privacy advocates up-in-arms. According to USA Today, the TSA would install a small chip at the entrance and exit of airport security checkpoints. This chip would read the serial number on a handheld device via Bluetooth...

Airport Body Scanners Store and Transmit Images, Contradicting TSA Statements

When full-body scanning started popping up at airport security checkpoints last year, travelers and privacy groups were up in arms. After all, who wants a revealing image of himself or herself stored on Transportation Security Administration (TSA) computers? Since then, the TSA has reassured us that the scanners neither store nor transmit images. But according to a report from CNN,...

New TSA Restrictions Limit Passenger Movement and Laptop Usage

We all knew the failed Christmas day bombing attempt on a Detroit-bound Northwest flight would result in stricter airport and airplane security, but recent reports about the shape of those new measures has many digital road warriors fuming and others scratching their heads. According to a statement from the TSA, "These measures are designed to be unpredictable, so passengers should not expect...

Online TSA Breach Finds Top Secret Security Documents Leaked

With all due respect to the artisans of the world, the average butcher, baker, or candlestick maker can probably commit the occasional FAIL without endangering too many people. If you're working at the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), though, and your job consists of details like, oh, protecting America... a workplace mishap is a tad more serious As ABC News reports, someone from...