Possible roll out of full body scanners
May 4th, 2011 by elisa

Reports are springing up about the likelihood of  a roll out of full-body scanners across UK airports as fears grow of retaliation after Osama Bin Laden’s killing.

Currently the scanners are used at Heathrow, Manchester and Birmingham airports, but the Daily Mail reports that they could be rolled out nationally in response to the fear of increased terrorist activity after the al Qaeda leader’s death.

The scanners have caused controversy as privacy campaigners claimed that the scanners were a form of ‘virtual strip searching’ as it is possible to see a nude outline of the passenger (see previous blog post for details).

British Airways chairman Sir Martin Broughton’s case that UK airport officials should employ a narrower, more focused approach to targeting potential terrorists at airports, is thought to have been strengthened by the recent news. He criticised the blanket approach taken by security services in the past. He believes the age, background, country of origin and travel plans of passengers should inform security officials on how they carry out their checks, and citizens from known trouble hotspots should be more closely scrutinised than known frequent flyers and pilots.

British Airline Pilots’ Association (BALPA) general secretary Jim McAuslan also commented on the situation: “Resources must be targeted at the greatest threats rather than the current blanket approach.”


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