with Lorelle and Brent VanFossen

US May Use Airline Data to Find Terrorist Sleepers

According to the Guardian, The U.S. May Use Airline Data to Find Sleepers. The article says that the Transportation Security Administration is testing a project known as “Secure Flight” to check for terrorist sleepers on flight passenger lists. Already it is being attacked for violating privacy laws.

Supposedly, Secure Flight is a more accurate method of checking passenger lists against terrorist watch lists than the current system run by the airlines and passed onto the government.

Many people who aren’t terrorists – Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, D-Mass., among them – have been told they can’t board flights because their names are similar to those on the no-fly list.

Secure Flight hit a snag Friday when congressional investigators said TSA had violated privacy protections when its contractor secretly collected 100 million records of commercially brokered information on at least 250,000 people.

Justin Oberman, in charge of Secure Flight at TSA, said the agency intends to do more testing of commercial data to see if it will help identify known or suspected terrorists not on the watch lists.

In a related story, Four sue over passenger data, four Alaskan residents are “suing the US Transportation Security Administration (TSA), seeking to prevent the agency deleting personal records that were obtained during a passenger-screening programme…According to reports the four are keen to see whether any information relating to them was obtained by the Agency, which is already in the process of deleting unwanted files.”

Only time will tell if such measures really work, especially since anyone can become a terrorist and there is more information needed than just names on a list.

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