Terrifying New Tech Unleashed By TSA

Reports reveal that more of your biometric data will be collected by the Transportation Security Administration.

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is reportedly collaborating with the research and development branch of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to evaluate data in preparation for the deployment of new facial-scanning devices at more than 400 U.S. airports.

According to a report, the most recent CAT scanners, called CAT-2 devices, use facial recognition technology to take photos of passengers in real time and compare them to their photo IDs.

The TSA is trying to downplay the significance of the shift by claiming that the amount of data gathered will be limited.

According to a TSA official who spoke with Nextgov/FCW, the CAT-2 units are already in use at approximately 30 airports nationwide. However, that number will rise to over 400 federalized airports soon. The official also mentioned that travelers have the option to not undergo the scan by simply informing a TSA agent and following the standard verification procedures.

The CAT-2 units of the agency use what is known as “one-to-one verification,” which involves comparing a person’s picture to a government-issued ID before erasing the photo from the scanner.

The TSA has made an effort in a fact sheet to reassure passengers that these devices would not violate their privacy rights.

Senators Jeff Merkley of Oregon and John Kennedy of Louisiana have almost no common ground. However, they both believe there is an urgent necessity to manage CAT-2 technology.

Senators Kennedy and Merkley introduced the Traveler Privacy Protection Act of 2023 last November, which would outlaw the use of scanners on the grounds that they are open to abuse and that users are unaware of their right to opt out. Additionally, the measure stipulates that prior to any future use of face recognition technology, formal authorization from Congress is required.

TSA scans hundreds of Americans’ faces daily without their consent or notices that they may opt-out. Kennedy’s press statement said that removing facial recognition would safeguard all Americans from Big Brother.

Merkley agreed, stating the TSA is a forerunner to national monitoring. Our privacy and freedom ideals could not be more at risk. No government deserves this authority.

Senators Edward Markey, Roger Marshall, Bernie Sanders, and Elizabeth Warren co-sponsored the measure.