Better airport scanners delayed by privacy fears

Discussion in 'Up to the Minute' started by tehcloser, Dec 29, 2009.

  1. tehcloser

    tehcloser New Member

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    Here's a good topic........I can see that they would be a plus, however.......I'm not real sure how I would feel about it being used on kids. Where do they draw the line? If you exclude kids, then they will use children. What say you?

    http://apnews.myway.com/article/20091229/D9CSM1SG1.html

    WASHINGTON (AP) - High-tech security scanners that might have prevented the Christmas Day attempt to blow up a jetliner have been installed in only a small number of airports around the world, in large part because of privacy concerns over the way the machines see through clothing.

    The body-scanning technology is in at least 19 U.S. airports, while European officials have generally limited it to test runs.
     
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  3. domesticmess

    domesticmess New Member

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    I have actually been scanned by this machine. The way it was explained to me is your actual XRAY or scan is only seen by 2 people in a closed room. So it wasn't like everyone in the check in line behind me saw my full body scan. Also, images are automatically deleted once an hour.
     
  4. SheWhoMustNotBeNamed

    SheWhoMustNotBeNamed Former Member

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    I say do it! I understand the concerns, but I don't think it's a big deal. If they will also scan children, then maybe the people who view the images should pass a background check the way anyone who works with children would.
     
  5. hockeymom

    hockeymom New Member

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    The way I feel about it,if I'm dead it really won't matter what my body parts looked like. I say scan away!!
     
  6. Pandora

    Pandora New Member

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    According to a news account I viewed, some European airports have computer programs that review the data gathered by these scanners. Security people only review the pics if the computer kicks out something hinky. The problem is that the computer program is expensive. (Personally, I like the computer idea--God knows no one really wants to see what's under my clothing.)
     
  7. Morag

    Morag Well-Known Member

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    As I understand it, the machines somewhat screen the private areas of those being screened...And the machines can't see through flesh. So could Dolly Parton (sorry, Dolly) just put a tube of explosives in a certain area and it would not be detected? I can also think of another scenario/location available to women...

    And if the people watching the screen are the least bit inattentive, they could miss the hidden items, even if the stuff is in the bad guy's pocket. After all, it has been shown time and again that the screeners who are looking at our carry on bags miss items because they look at thousands of bags a day and just kinda zone out after a while.

    So if the TSA personnel watching the "peep show" :blushing: are equally likely to just overlook things after seeing thousands of boobs and pubes, how does this make us safer? No way would this be 100% secure, because it is just human beings being human while doing their jobs, and they will fail, probably with some frequency.

    And what about the cumulative effect of xrays on a frequent traveler's body?

    There are people with great financial interests (I'm looking at you, former Homeland Security Director Chertoff) who are anxious for this system to be purchased and used.

    To sum up: genuine privacy concerns for our citizens; plenty of opportunities to fail given the frailty of human nature; possible health risks for some travelers; dubious advocacy on behalf of the machine producers.

    Our country is better than this. If this is necessary, then let all members of congress, the executive branch, and the judicial branch, and their spouses, parents and children, be the testers of the system. Set a bunch of machines up in a big gym in DC, give some of the "guinea pigs" phony bombs to conceal on their persons, and then xray Chertoff's grandchildren, Scalia's wife, Biden's mom, etc. See what the real effect of such invasive searches is.

    And if they all say, I didn't mind a bit, my cancer wasn't aggravated by the xrays, I didn't care if I was pulled aside and strip searched because of a roll of life savers in my waistband, I wasn't embarrassed by the attention or the viewing of my body, and every single bit of contraband was found by the extremely alert and conscientious scanner-viewers. --then perhaps the rest of us can feel comfortable with the procedure.

    And remember, if this isn't enough, if there are still explosives being brought on board-- you know what is coming next. NUDE FLYING! (count me out).

    Our country is better than this. Do you really think that (insert name of religious community here) will allow themselves to be violated like this? It's not just squeamish non-hardbodies who find this technique repulsive.

    How about training a few thousand dogs? They are amazingly accurate, and they can do their job by just strolling through.
     
  8. miss u daddy

    miss u daddy Barack the Vote!

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    I am not comfortable with the body scans. I have refused them and instead would rather be pulled aside and patted down. I have nothing to hide except the way I look under clothes. I do not believe the public should get to view me in that way. I think it is fine if you want to, but we should get a choice. I would not let my child into a body scan either.
     
  9. kgeaux

    kgeaux New Member

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    actually, the machines DO see through flesh. We have one at my job-site, and it is in use to prevent the theft of precious metals, gemstones and other high ticket items.

    Tampons would be invisible to the machine, because they are made of material. Implants would be visible, as would metal pins in bones or joint replacements.

    I totally hate the machine at work, because even if the security guard is in another room, there is enough detail to make each employee recognizable. However, in an airport situation, I say go for it. The people looking at the scan don't know the passengers on a daily basis, and who cares WHAT they see, as long as they catch explosives, etc.
     
  10. SheWhoMustNotBeNamed

    SheWhoMustNotBeNamed Former Member

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    Ummmm, it's not like they are displaying your image for the entire airport to see. Or even for anyone in line behind you. It would go to a private booth, where you would never see them and they would never see you (assuming, of course, that you have nothing on you to warrant them stopping you).

    I'm not saying a body scan is the absolute answer to our problems. But I honestly don't see the harm in trying.
     
  11. Cypros

    Cypros New Member

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  12. Morag

    Morag Well-Known Member

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    http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/news/article-23397526-health-fear-over-new-airport-scanners.do

    "The X-Rays penetrate one-tenth of an inch into the body, enough to detect any devices or drugs hidden just under the skin."

    Is anyone here old enough to remember the Dick Tracy comics? As I recall, there was once a bad guy named "Pouch" who had a surgical pouch on his body to conceal whatever. I still wonder if the scanners can detect the difference between talcum powder (for example) and explosive powder. And the 4 or 5 3 oz bottles we are allowed are never checked as to contents.

    This technology seems to me to be a slippery slope which erodes our privacy and will not necessarily deter a genuine terrorist. Do the Israelis rely on these scanners?

    I am trying to get a good source for this, but apparently the Israelis do not use the scanners, at least partially in deference to Muslim sensibilities.
     
  13. jjenny

    jjenny Well-Known Member

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    Yea, until those photos start showing up on the internet. And please, just because they are deleted after one hour, doesn't mean they couldn't be captured with a hand held camera. Especially celebrities or people with unusual anatomy will have to worry. I am totally against is. I am not even sure these scanners would pick up PETN explosives-after all, it's powder and nothing else.
    And what about children? Would these images be considered "child porn?"
     
  14. tehcloser

    tehcloser New Member

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    New scanners break child porn laws

    The rapid introduction of full body scanners at British airports threatens to breach child protection laws which ban the creation of indecent images of children, the Guardian has learned.

    Privacy campaigners claim the images created by the machines are so graphic they amount to "virtual strip-searching" and have called for safeguards to protect the privacy of passengers involved.

    Ministers now face having to exempt under 18s from the scans or face the delays of introducing new legislation to ensure airport security staff do not commit offences under child pornography laws.

    They also face demands from civil liberties groups for safeguards to ensure that images from the £80,000 scanners, including those of celebrities, do not end up on the internet. The Department for Transport confirmed that the "child porn" problem was among the "legal and operational issues" now under discussion in Whitehall after Gordon Brown's announcement on Sunday that he wanted to see their "gradual" introduction at British airports.


    http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2010/jan/04/new-scanners-child-porn-laws
     
  15. Morag

    Morag Well-Known Member

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  16. JBean

    JBean Retired WS Administrator

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    at only 1/10th of an inch through the skin, heavier people could just put explosives between folds of skin and it would go undetected no problem.

    I also listened to an interview and one of the big concens from older folks, was that they wear depends. the depends have that gel in them just like regular diapers and this would cause them to probably be pulled out and searched more carefully.


    good information at this site;

    http://flyersrights.org/
     
  17. JBean

    JBean Retired WS Administrator

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    Ex-Homeland Security chief head said to abuse public trust by touting body scanners

    Since the attempted bombing of a U.S. airliner on Christmas Day, former Homeland Security secretary Michael Chertoff has given dozens of media interviews touting the need for the federal government to buy more full-body scanners for airports.
    What he has made little mention of is that the Chertoff Group, his security consulting agency, includes a client that manufactures the machines. The relationship drew attention after Chertoff disclosed it on a CNN program Wednesday, in response to a question.
     
  18. kgeaux

    kgeaux New Member

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    We've been assured that one dental x-ray exposes us to more radiation than a year of scanning out through this machine. Not real sure that's completely accurate, but I do know it is an extremely small dose.
     
  19. oh_gal

    oh_gal New Member

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    Assuming that modesty is the issue:

    Sorry, but this is just silly.

    I'm almost sure it's (mostly) the men out there who are worried about their modesty, and not the women. (I mean, really...are you that concerned someone's going to see your wee-wee and find it woefully inadequate?)

    Ask any woman who's every been to a gynecologist yearly, or had children naturally. You've seen one, you've seen 'em all.
     
  20. jjenny

    jjenny Well-Known Member

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    Oh really? Did you see "Say yes to the dress" TV show, when Mrs. Duggar showed up? The woman had 19 kids. Yet they had to build the dress up for her to cover her shoulders and arms, because (paraphrasing her words) of how modest she is.
    So I guess I fail to see the correlation between having children naturally, yearly gynecological visits, and willingness for other people to see you undressed.
     
  21. oh_gal

    oh_gal New Member

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    Then let me try to be a bit more clear.

    I see absolutely no difference (as far as modesty is concerned) between having your yearly gyno exam (or experiencing natural childbirth with a roomful of people) and passing through an airport screening. Actually, that's not right. You have far less privacy at your gyno exam or during childbirth, unless,of course, the screeners are going to get really, really physical and personal. In my original post (that you were commenting on) I stated that if it were a modesty issue, then it would probably be more men than women objecting, because women have already gone through annual gyn. exams and natural childbirth, and, because of that, are perhaps a little less freaked out over having someone see them nude -- kind of the, "been there, done that" scenario. We can't really count Mrs. Duggar as your "typical" person, since the very act of having 19 children puts her in a league of her own.

    Having said that, I find it absurd that someone would actually worry about the lone screener who is going to see an approximation of their private parts. (Really? Do you really think they're going to sit there and either drool or gag over your glorified x-ray?)

    I would go so far as to say that if you're that worried about it, you are far too into yourself. (Not you, personally...."you" in the general sense).

    I cannot believe that someone would actually let a few seconds of ill-gotten vanity override their personal safety (as well as everyone else's). I don't want someone like that on any flight I take. Perhaps everyone not wishing to submit to the screening can be put on their own flight, along with the terrorists.

    Again, I say all this only if modesty is the issue. I'm not talking about risk of illness from radiation exposure or whether or not the screening actually picks up any potential explosives/risks.

    Hope that clears it up for you. :D
     

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