For a while it seemed like stories about the TSA body scanners and the “enhanced pat-down” procedures were in the news everywhere. The body scanners create 3d images of the body using either Millimeter Wave Technology or Backscatter Technology. Some travelers object to what is described as a “visual strip search“ and do not want to be scanned.
However, scientists have proposed a solution to this particular problem with the scanners. The images of people’s bodies would be distorted in a way very similar to what a funhouse mirror would do. Foreign objects would still be clearly visible, but the image would no longer be clearly identifiable as a human body.
I’m totally pro-airport security, but I also believe that people are entitled to a certain degree of privacy and so I think this is a pretty fantastic idea. It better protects people’s privacy and it doesn’t seem like it would compromise the security of the airport. It is possible to identify anomalies and potential threats without having to make people feel that they are being exposed. Once you take clearly defined bodies out of the equation the searches don’t seem quite so invasive and will likely raise fewer objections (at least privacy-related objections as the health risks of certain scanners are still a concern to some) to the scanners which would in turn lead to fewer pat-downs being necessary.