London: A blogger has exposed loopholes in controversial nude body scanners used at US airports.
An engineer Jonathan Corbett published a video where he shows how he took a small metal case through two of the TSA’s 1billion dollars fleet in a special side pocket stitched into his shirt.
This is because, he suggests, the scanners blend metallic areas into the dark background - so if an object is not directly placed on the body, it will not show up on the scan, the Daily Mail reported.
He claimed that the metallic box would have triggered an alarm had he passed through the old detecting system.
His revelation comes just weeks after Europe banned the ‘airport strip-searches’ amidst fears the X-ray technology could cause cancer.
Corbett, standing in his living room as he speaks to the camera in the video for his ‘TSA Out of Our Pants’ blog, acknowledged that the technique could be used by terrorists.
But he believes that they would already know about the loophole, and took the steps to show ‘how much danger the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is putting all us all in’.
Corbett, who is suing the TSA for rolling out the scanners, described how the loophole worked.
“Here are several images produced by TSA nude body scanners. You’ll see that the search victim is drawn with light colours and placed on a black background in both images,” he said.
“In these samples, the individuals are concealing metallic objects that you can see as a black shape on their light figure. Again that’s light figure, black background, and black threat items.
“Yes that’s right, if you have a metallic object on your side, it will be the same colour as the background and therefore completely invisible to both visual and automated inspection.
“It can’t possibly be that easy to beat the TSA’s billion dollar fleet of nude body scanners, right? The TSA can’t be that stupid, can they? Unfortunately, they can, and they are.”
He asserted that he put his theory to the test by buying a sewing kit to sew a pocket directly onto the side of his shirt.
He then took a metallic case and walked through a backscatter X-ray at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport - all of which he video recorded.
“While I’m not about to win any videography awards for my hidden camera footage, you can watch as I walk through the security line with the metal object in my new side pocket,” he said.
“My camera gets placed on the conveyor belt and goes through its own x-ray, and when it comes out, I’m through, and the object never left my pocket.
“Maybe a fluke? OK, let’s try again at Cleveland-Hopkins International Airport through one of the TSA’s newest machines: a millimetre wave scanner with automated threat detection built-in.”
He revealed that with the metallic object in his side pocket, he entered the security line.
“My device goes through its own x-ray, I pass through, and exit with the object without any complaints from the TSA.”
“While I carried the metal case empty, it could easily have been filled with razor blades, explosives, or one of Charlie Sheen’s infamous seven gram rocks of cocaine.
“With a bigger pocket, perhaps sewn on the inside of the shirt, even a firearm could get through.”
Although Corbett’s actions have not been independently verified, and the TSA have not commented on the video, he said it proved the organisation’s ‘disregard for safety’.
“Now, I’m sure the TSA will accuse me of aiding the terrorists by releasing this video, but it’s beyond belief that the terrorists haven’t already figured this out and are already plotting to use this against us.”
“It’s also beyond belief that the TSA did not already know everything I just told you, and arrogantly decided to disregard our safety. The nude body scanner program is nothing but a giant fraud,” he added.