Questions Still Exist on Efficacy of TSA’s Full Body Scanners

by Dr. Edward Group DC, NP, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM
Published on , Last Updated on

You might remember back in March, a man named Jonathan Corbett posted a video claiming to expose a flaw with the nude body scanning machines the TSA uses in airports. Corbett claimed that metal objects, if carried on a person’s side, can blend in with the background of the image generated by the scanner. This would make it potentially possible to have a metal object in a side pocket be undetected.

Last week, Corbett posted a new video that was obtained through the Freedom of Information Act. This footage, TSA’s footage, shows him successfully passing through the body scanning process with the undetected object in his side pocket.

YouTube Video

Predictably, when Corbett’s first video was released, Greg Soule, a TSA spokesman, dismissed it as a, “crude attempt to allegedly show how to circumvent TSA screening procedures.”

However, Corbett asserts all he, and millions of other people, want is for the TSA to return to more dignified and effective measures such as metal detectors and bomb-sniffing dogs. The groping and nude photo machines have to stop. “I’m not ready to let the government take nude pictures of me just to fly, especially when the scanners don’t even work,” he says.

I agree with him. Having to be exposed or intimately touched, just to travel, is flat out wrong. We’ve also all heard the unfortunate horror stories of how these procedures have unfairly affected travelers with medical conditions [1]. Perhaps most importantly, we cannot ignore the fact that we do not know what the long-term health consequences of these machines will be. What’s your take on this issue? Please leave your comments below.

References (1)
  1. Alex Sundby. TSA defends removing adult's diaper for pat down. CBS News. 2011 June 27.

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