Airport X-ray scans of airline passengers' shoes cannot detect explosives, according to a 2005
Homeland Security Department report on aviation screening. So why are authorities still scanning our shoes with outdated technology incapable of spotting what it's supposed to spot? Snip from AP item:
Findings from the report, obtained by The Associated Press, did not stop the Transportation Security Administration from announcing Sunday that all airline passengers must remove their shoes and run them through X-ray machines before boarding commercial aircraft. (...)
In its April 2005 report, "Systems Engineering Study of Civil Aviation Security – Phase I," the Homeland Security Department concluded that images on X-ray machines don't provide the information necessary to detect explosives.
Machines used at most airports to scan hand-held luggage, purses, briefcases and shoes have not been upgraded to detect explosives since the report was issued.
(thanks, rich mogull
Reader comment: Dr. Paul J. Camp says,
In World War II, the OSS used to send spies and saboteurs into occupied Europe with, among other things, knives concealed in the soles of their shoes. I doubt the trick has been forgotten, and if it is ceramic rather than metal, the knife wouldn't set off the metal detectors. You can easily obtain a ceramic knife blade at any of your higher end cooking-as-a-fashion-statement stores.
Just because X-rays don't catch the terrorist-du-jour doesn't mean they are useless.
Now that I've written this, the NSA will probably be listening in on all my future phone calls.
It’s the end of an era, sort of: Fraunhofer IIS, the developers of the MP3 audio compression format, announced that they are ceasing their licensing program. In a blog post, spokesman Matthias Rose says that it’s had a good 20-year run and is obsolete. But it’s also true that the decoding patents expired last year, […]
Freddy deBoer writes that he’s been telling the same joke for years about Silicon Valley’s only product, which might be universalized as “At last, a way to verb with nouns on the internet!” But the social-media techopoly is stable, now, and so the venture capitalists have moved on to the three terrible trends that will […]
Alex Wood is an addict but won’t give up his smartphone. But he has five strategies for limiting its control over him: “I used to wake up tired. My body would ache and my head felt sore, like waking up with a hangover. Finally, I took control, like attending an AA class for addicts, I […]
If you don’t want to get stuck footing the bill for a hit and run, this dashboard-mounted camera offers up to 2K resolution to make sure you always have a reliable witness, and it’s available in the Boing Boing Store for 30% off it’s usual price.The PapaGo mounts unobtrusively to your windshield to see everything […]
While some people still maintain that everything in Apple’s walled garden “just works” and is immune to the rampant malware of the Windows world, the reality is different. The Mac’s growing market share has made it a much more viable target for malicious actors, and its built-in tools aren’t always enough to fix things. Drive […]
Boasting an IPX6 waterproof rating, the Trakk Bullet Ultra Compact Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker resists dust and heavy rainfall. It’s currently available in the Boing Boing Store.The Trakk Bullet offers the same wireless convenience as other portable speakers, but few are built as tough as this one. Its utilitarian construction is designed to be a totally low-maintenance […]