Can the TSA do behavioral profiling?

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Offline CliffordK

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Can the TSA do behavioral profiling?
« on: 04/09/2011 22:14:34 »
Apparently, nearly a decade after the World Trade Center attacks, the TSA is now implementing a new experimental Behavior Analysis project with a specialized Behavioral Detection Officer.

It sounds to me like there will be a fine line between behavioral profiling and racial profiling, although perhaps that isn't bad.

Other countries don't seem to think of Racial Profiling as being a problem.

When I was in Egypt a few years ago, All the hotels had metal detectors.  The guests from the USA and Europe were instructed to walk around the metal detectors, or ignore them.  Apparently the detectors were primarily for the Egyptian Employees!!!

I guess I have never been impressed by the TSA expertise/policies.  I think I've been forced to check tools like a very small pair of vice-grip pliers, or a miniature monkey wrench that I had forgotten that  I had with me.

Once I was bringing a small original sculpture that I had made for a wedding gift as carry-on. 

"Two hearts pierced by a single arrow".

I was told that I couldn't bring my sculpture as a carry-on, and it had to be checked.  Apparently the blunt arrow integrated into the sculpture was considered to be a danger.

Thankfully I usually give myself a little extra time.

NPR also seemed to indicate that the TSA may begin taking biometrics (fingerprints) and may start some kind of a low risk frequent-flyer program.  Apparently that has been tried in the past with marginal success. 

When my Father was traveling to San Francisco for an experimental cancer treatment, I think once every 2 weeks.  the TSA checks appeared to be miserable.  He had bilateral knee replacement, which of course set off their sensors (but also should have given a localized reading).  So, the TSA would take away his cane and force him to stand spread-eagle without support while they did their scans with the handheld wand.... EVERY TIME. 

The risk of systematically ignoring any class of travelers is great.  However, the policies also have to be "reasonable".

So, what will the new policies bring?  Improved detection?  More hassles?