NEWARK, NJ (AP / WCBS 880 / CBS 2) – Air travelers passing through Newark Liberty International Airport will soon feel a little more exposed.

LISTEN: WCBS 880’s Levon Putney reports Full Body Scanners Debut at Newark Liberty International Airport

Beginning Thursday, the Transportation Security Administration is rolling out new high-tech body scanners at Newark. The machine create a computerized image of a person’s body and give screeners the ability to check for weapons.

The scanners debuted at Kennedy Airport last week. There currently are more than 300 of them in use at 65 airports around the country.

TSA officials will be at Newark Liberty Airport on Thursday to demonstrate the machines and procedures to protect passengers’ privacy.

The TSA says the technology is optional for all passengers.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

Comments (9)
  1. Mark says:

    It is so absurd. Don’t they understand that there is no such thing as absolute security. It is a trade off. Anybody who surfs the web–namely everybody–knows that the only perfect security is to not have your computer attached to the internet! After that, you can make a comprehensive firewall and other security measures, but in return you limit your ability to surf. Trade offs.

    I don’t understand. They say there has been no hijacking since 9/11. That is 9 years!! Not a single one! Why this absurd addition? I’ll tell you why: The illusion of security. Terrorism’s goal is to create, um, terror! They do it by showing the power of the few over the many. It is very hard to stop any random individuals. In fact, all you need is somebody reasonably skilled at martial arts and they have a good shot at taking over a plane. Yeah, there can be air marshals, but are they really going to fire a gun on an airplane?!? Besides, that presumes they’ll have a shot in the first place, and not have the gun taken away from them and used to threaten the pilots.

    How about trains or buses? Should we do body scans for those? A train or bus with a bomb on it can do serious damage.

    Like I said, the “illusion of control”. In return for the pseudo-comfort attained through these hyped-up “security” measures, we lose our freedom, our privacy, our dignity, and our time. Grow up!!

  2. mike says:

    They should scan Christie. I am sure there will be a lot of staff hidden under all that FAT LAYERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. The Batty Britt says:

    I understand the need for safety…. but are we not falling into the habbit of excepting every loss of liberty, every look into out lives (& this case our body) in the name of safety. I ask who are we to be more worried about? The Governments who alow this to happen, the companies who are making millions on the backs of our fear or the people who are planning to hurt us.
    I do love living in a free country, but can’t help thinking it’s not as free as once it was!

  4. Frequent Flyer Soon No More says:

    You complaining now? What will you say when we get the body cavity scanners/searches? After all, you can hide explosives in there too, right?!!!


    Share sane view as Dan Te.The device will be more than okay when fixed in politicians home.

  6. Mel B. says:

    How to opt out of the TSA’s naked body scanners at the airport

    I encountered my first airport naked body scanner while flying out of California today, and of course I decided to “opt out” of the scan. You do this by telling the blue-shirted TSA agents that you simply wish to opt out of the body scanner. Here’s what happened after that:

    A TSA agent told me to step to the side and stay put. He then proceeded to shout out loudly enough for all the other travelers and TSA agents to hear, “OPT OUT! OPT OUT!” This is no doubt designed to attract attention (or perhaps humiliation) to those who choose to opt out of the naked body scanner. I saw no purpose for this verbal alert because the sameTSA agent who was yelling this ultimately was the one who patted me down anyway.

    For the pat down, first I was required to walk through the regular metal detector. From there, I was asked if I wanted to be patted down in a private room, or if I didn’t mind just being patted down in full view of everyone else. Not being a shy person in the first place, I told the agent I didn’t need a private room.

    He then explained to me that he was going to pat down my entire body, including my crotch and my buttocks, but that he would use the back of his hands to pat down the crotch and buttocks areas. This is probably designed to make the pat-down seem less “personal” and more detached. That way, air passengers can’t complain of being felt up by TSA agents who might get carried away with the pat-down procedure. He asked if it hurt for me to be touched anywhere, and I told him no, at which point he proceeded with the pat down.

    It was a well-scripted pat-down, covering all the areas of my body, including a mild crotch sweep (it wasn’t especially invasive or anything, as doctors will do far worse during a physical exam). He swept my arms, legs, hips, back of the neck, ankles and everywhere else. To the TSA’s credit, this guy was fast, efficient and only used a light touch that was in no way disturbing. But it did take an extra five minutes or so compared to walking through the naked body scanner.

    Speaking of the naked body scanners, as I was having my crotch swept by the back of the hand of this TSA agent, I was observing other air travelers subjecting themselves to the naked body scanners. They were told to walk into the body scanner staging area and then hold their arms in the air in a pose as if they were under arrest. They were told to freeze in this position for several seconds (perhaps 10 seconds) during which they were being blasted with ionizing radiation that we all know contributes to cancer.

    The TSA, of course, will tell you that these machines can’t possibly contribute to cancer. But they said the same thing about mammograms, and we now know that mammograms are so harmful to women’s health that they actually harm ten women for everyone one woman they help. So I’m not exactly taking the U.S. government at its word that naked body scanner radiation is “harmless.”

    As these air travelers were being scanned, their naked body images were appearing on a screen somewhere, of course. Some TSA agent was examining the naked body shape and contours of all these people, and even though we were told by the TSA that the image viewing machines cannot store images, we have since learned that the machines actually do have the capability to store those images (…). In addition, rogue TSA employees could simply use their cell phones to take snapshots of what they see on the screen. There are no doubt rules against such behavior, but it’s bound to happen sooner or later.

    Meanwhile, my own security screening was proceeding fully clothed. I don’t want to broadcast my naked butt cheeks on the TSA’s graphic monitors, thank you very much!

    Very few people opt out of the naked body scanners
    The most fascinating part about this entire process was not the verbal broadcast of my opt out status, nor having my crotch swept by the latex-covered back hand of some anonymous TSA agent, but rather the curious fact that I was the only one opting out. Although I must have watched at least a hundred people go through this particular security checkpoint, there wasn’t a single other person who opted out of the naked body scan.

    They all just lined up like cattle to have their bodies scanned with ionizing radiation.

    To me, that’s just fascinating. That when people are given a choice to opt out of being irradiated, they will choose to just go along with the naked body scan rather than risk standing out by requesting to opt out.

    You see, I’m not convinced that the TSA’s naked body scanners enhance air travel security at all. Previous security tests conducted by the FAA show quite clearly that the greatest threat toairplane safety isn’t from the passengers but from ground crews, where bombs and other materials can be quite easily smuggled onto planes.

    But even though naked body scanners may not enhance air travel security, they do accomplish something far more intriguing: The successful completion of an experiment in human behavior. If you were to pose the question “Will people line up like cattle to be electronically undressed in front of government security officers?” The answer is now unequivocally YES!

    Most people, it turns out, will simply do whatever they’re told by government authorities, even if it means giving up their privacy or their freedoms. Almost anything can be sold to the public under the guise of “fighting terrorism” these days, including subjecting your body to what is essentially a low-radiation CT scan at the airport!

    I don’t know about you, but I don’t think I should be required to subject myself to ionizing radiation as a condition of air travel security. Of course, the more technically minded readers among you might counter by saying that high-altitude travel is, all by itself, an event that subjects you to low levels of ionizing radiation (which is true). But that’s all the more reason to not add the body’s radiation burden any more than necessary. Americans already get far too much radiation from CT scans and other medical imaging tests (not to mention mammograms). Do we really need to dose peoples’ bodies with yet more radiation every time they board an airplane?

    Dr. Leonard Coldwell

    1. Clark Ken-ton says:

      Excellent article…er..comment, Dr. Thank you. Very thoughtful.

  7. DanTe says:

    Don’t worry about radiation. That’s just fantasy. It uses magic light rays to see into you.

    We should set a scanner up in every politician’s home.

  8. Joe D. says:

    An absolute total invasion of privacy. Saftey and security are one thing – this is quite another!

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