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TSA may revise naked body scanners

by Jorge Hernandez on November 19, 2010

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is considering replacing their controversial naked body scanners with less invasive X-ray technology.

The new "g-rated" body scanners would show a "stick-figure" version of the passenger's body that would only display blocks around non-body items such as cell phones (or weapons). Testing for the new technology began amid a national outcry against what many consider a pornographic security measure and invasion of their privacy.

One internet group plans to organize a "National Opt-Out Day" on Thanksgiving Eve, encouraging thousands of travelers to shun the security checks on the busiest travel day of the year.

The Associated Press reports that some airports are thinking about boycotting the TSA by choosing privately manufactured body scanners instead, which federal law would allow. Two commercial pilots have also spoken out against the scanners and refuse to fly out of airports that use them.

The TSA's George Naccara explained to the Boston Herald that "if I walk through the new machine…there would be a block around my cell phone…a block around my belt. But there would not be a human image of me."

Boston's Logan Airport will be the first to switch to the new X-ray technology this winter. Logan was also the first U.S. airport to employ the full-frontal body scanners in March, according to the news source.

According to ABC News, other foreign countries are also employing more invasive procedures. Canada installed full-body scanners in several airports in January, and London Heathrow Airport has been using the technology for several months. Many other European airports are considering similar measures, and Israel's Ben Gurion Airport is notorious for its strict security standards, reports the news source.

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