Sunday, October 25, 2009

The TSA Blogs

Well, the TSA doesn't, but Blogger Bob at the TSA does, and it looks like he's doing a proper job of it. Bob noticed the post about the little girl on the TSA watch list, and posted a response that's probably worth your time.
Many have been misidentified as a match or possible match for the Selectee Watch List and the only thing they could do is work with the Redress Office to correct the problem.

But who is that I see? Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, It’s Secure Flight! Airlines are beginning to ask for name, date of birth, and gender as it appears on the government ID you plan to use when traveling. This is a part of the Secure Flight program. The program will be in full effect for domestic airlines by the first quarter of 2010 and the rest of the airlines will be on board by the end of 2010. It will reduce mismatched names by 99.9%.
He also stopped by here and left a comment in my post. Like I said, it looks like he's doing a proper job, following trackbacks and links.

I have to admit that ty first reaction to his post on Secure Flight was a little grumpy - more information being collected - bah, humbug. On reflection, the engineer in me thinks this is a pragmatic approach to take. I'd still like to see TSA focus more on matching bags to passengers, and I'd like to see them take more of the approach that El Al takes for screening terrorists, but this does look like a positive step forward that will reduce hassles for flyers.

If it's true that there are 100,000 people on the watch lists, then this will get that down to a few hundred, if Bob gets his 99.9%. That's a high bar to set, but kudos for trying.

Filed under the tag Security Kabuki only because people reading through these posts should read this one, for a more positive story.

All in all, Bob has a pretty interesting blog. I like the post about the guy in the wheelchair who forgot his two pistols under the seat cushion. And the one where he posted CCTV footage of the incident where a woman claimed she was separated from her child is IMHO precisely what blogs are good for. It will be interesting if Bob is able to maintain his blog-fu from inside the TSA bureaucracy.

Well done Bob and the TSA.


GSOLTSO said...

Thanks for your kind words about TSA. I hope you come visit us often and we appreciate the input from all people. Nice blog!

TSA Blog Team

Anonymous said...

I **really** wish people would STOP wishing TSA would invoke El Al Israeli style security. Do YOU think, for one minute, that Americans would stand by for an exhaustive security interview before getting on their flight from Des Moines, Iowa to Orlando, Florida to go visit Mickey and Minnie?? Oh, HELLLLLLL to the NO! El Al has to protect less than 5% of the total number of airplanes which the US has. El Al can have that kind of security because they have so FEW airplanes to protect!!

Anonymous said...

Everyone who thinks that the US should mimic the Israeli police state should go hop a plane (after an extensive political background/purity check) and sign up with the IDF. Stop ruining America with this crap.

Borepatch said...

Anonymous, are there any techniques that we can learn from other countries that we can use to improve our procedures? The problem right now is the rate of false positive identification is way too high (remember when Senator Kennedy was told he couldn't fly?).