Oct 072009
 
 October 7, 2009  Govt, Surveillance, U.S.

EPIC.org notes:

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has plans to greatly expand its use of whole body imaging machines at airports around the country. The x-ray machines, which each cost over $100,000, capture detailed, graphic images of passengers’ naked bodies. In June, the House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed a measure that would restrict TSA’s use of these machines. The measure is pending in the Senate. The Privacy Coalition has urged the Department of Homeland Security to suspend the program until privacy and security risks can be fully evaluated. EPIC has also filed Freedom of Information Act requests for the contracts with the vendor Rapiscan.

Also affecting airport travelers: Scott Powers reports in the Chicago Tribune that three companies are bidding to take over the Clear Registered Travel program.

But now at least three companies, including FLO Corp., which ran a separate registered traveler program in Reno, Nev., are bidding to buy Clear’s customer lists and re-establish the service. Orlando International, which was the first Clear airport in 2005 and hosted the most registered travelers, may be the location the companies want most.

“It’s the plum,” FLO managing partner Fred Fischer said. “It’s the peach.”

FLO, a Delaware corporation; Henry Inc. of California; and at least one other bidder that has not been publicly identified have made formal pitches to Morgan Stanley, which gained control of the assets after Clear’s parent company, Verified Identity Pass, shut down June 22.

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