No more naked image scanners in US
The Transport Security Agency (TSA), the people who decided that an elderly chassidishe Rebbe
is as big a terror suspect as a Muslim in his 20's, is being forced to get rid of about 250 airport scanners
, because the nude pictures they produce are too explicit.
TSA will end a $5 million contract with OSI’s Rapiscan unit
for the software after Administrator John Pistole concluded the
company couldn’t meet a congressional deadline to produce
generic passenger images, agency officials said in interviews.
The agency removed 76 of the machines from busier U.S.
airports last year. It will now get rid of the remaining 174
Rapiscan machines, with the company absorbing the cost, said
Karen Shelton Waters, the agency’s assistant administrator for
acquisitions. The TSA will use 60 machines manufactured by L-3
Communications Holdings Inc. (LLL), the agency’s other supplier of
body scanners, and will move some scanners to busier airports to
reduce waiting times.
“It became clear to TSA they would be unable to meet our
timeline,” Waters said. “As a result of that, we terminated
the contract for the convenience of the government.”
OSI Systems rose $2.37, or 3.5 percent, to $70.02 in Nasdaq
The decision to cancel the Rapiscan software contract and
remove its scanners wasn’t related to an agency probe of whether
the company faked testing data on the software fix, Waters said.
L-3 scanning machines rely on millimeter-wave technology,
which uses radio frequencies that can find both metallic and
non-metallic items. Rapiscan’s machines are based on backscatter
technology, which uses low-dose X-ray radiation to detect
objects under a passenger’s clothes.
Airline passengers were offended by the revealing images,
including those of children and the elderly. The Washington-
based Electronic Privacy Information Center sued the agency in
July 2010, claiming the scanners violated privacy laws and has
called use of the machines equivalent to a “physically invasive
One of these days, maybe TSA will move into the 21st century and do security like they do it in Israel.
Labels: airport security, TSA