Ms. Smith - Sun, 03/06/11
We’ve heard how if you don’t like TSA screenings, then don’t fly; instead take a bus, a train, or drive your car. If gas prices keep climbing, driving may not be an affordable option in the future. In that same future, Homeland Security had considered hitting the streets with TSA airport-like body scanners to covertly peek under your clothes, into your bags, and even into your vehicles. Whether you call it a police state, a peep show, or plain old privacy invasion, the increasing surveillance needs to stop.
The Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) discovered that the Department of Homeland Security paid contractors “millions of dollars on mobile body scanner technology that could be used at railways, stadiums, and elsewhere” on crowds of moving people. EPIC acquired the 173-pages of contracts and reports [PDF] via the Freedom of Information Act.
Homeland Security said it dropped the project, but EPIC lawyer Ginger McCall called Homeland Security’s project “disturbing” because the “department obviously believed that this level of surveillance is acceptable when in fact it is not at all acceptable,” USA Today reported.