Terminal insecurity
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29-12-2013, 10:02 AM
RE: Terminal insecurity
The original rules on electronics were because we did not fully understand how magnetic fields could impact radar and there was a fear of interference during take off and landings. We now know that they won't, but rules die hard and now they make you turn these things off in the interest of "safety", the logic being that if you are paying attention to a gadget you won't listen to the flight crew in case of an emergency. Of course, you can still read a book or a magazine, which is no less of a distraction and highlights the rules are complete bullshit. A lot of these rules are now going away.

Cell phones were banned for a different reason. In the US it was a not a push by the FAA but by the FCC. The fear was that hving cell phones on in airplanes would cause the phones on those planes to clog the networks. The way cell phones work, if you have enough people with cell phones on during approach and take off they could start to grab bandwidth on the towers below and clog up the networks. We've advanced far enough in terms of capacity management on cell towers and networks that this is not likely to happen now (I'm not sure it was ever a real probability) and you're now seeing pushes to ease up on the cell phone restrictions too.

Personally, I hope they keep the ban on cell phones on planes. I commute by train part of the time and there is nothing more annoying than someone screaming their private conversations on a train. I fly a lot and having to deal with that on a plane will take an already miserable experience and make it intolerable.

As for security, airline security is a joke and mostly a waste of time. I think the primary reason for all the crazines now is a combination of governments to be seen as doing "something" to make us safer and a great lobbying effort by companies like L3 (who also make big campaign contributions) to convince the government to buy these expensive machines to check us all. I also think there is an element of getting people used to submitting to authority and giving up our rights, you know, for our own good and safety.

When I fly, I refuse to go through those 3D scanners and opt for the pat down. My experience with the TSA is they are generally polite and I never give them a hard time. They don't make the rules. But, I always exercise my right not to go through those machines, even if it slows the whole line down.

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30-12-2013, 10:11 AM (This post was last modified: 30-12-2013 11:50 AM by Luminon.)
RE: Terminal insecurity
Take it positively, maybe they'll find some early stage of rectal cancer you didn't know about Dodgy (just kidding, so far the airports in Paris or Prague use only metal detector frames, handheld detectors and baggage x-rays.)

It's a waste of money, but I'd be more worried about computer checks. In my country, corrupt, insane and draconic as it is, it is still legal to download any kind of media. (oligarchs too have families who want to download movies from servers) Thus I have a lot of less than licensed media files. Yeah, I could delete them. But what if the security looks at the erased files?

There was a story, I can't find it right now, but in New Zealand they reputedly check computer contents. There was a young man who got a thorough computer examination. The interesting thing is, two months earlier he was seen at an anti-spying demonstration. Is that how the government chooses its victim?

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30-12-2013, 03:53 PM
RE: Terminal insecurity
I see this thread has drifted around a bit but I must respond to the OP. The weapons shown in that video would be impossible or certainly near impossible to assemble in a waiting area or on a plane. Maybe sitting on the toilet in a bathroom it could be done but you will note that sometimes wire cutters or other tools which would not pass the TSA's were required. I think the video simply represents someone making up potential devices which would be impossible or nearly so to accomplish in fact.

None of the above is to suggest that security at airports is a bit of a pain and maybe not successful in accomplishing its goals. I just don't think the video represents a real picture of possible events.
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