TSA ends contract with Rapiscan

Discussion in 'Aviation Passenger Security in the USA' started by Mike, Jan 17, 2013.

  1. Mike

    Mike Founding Member Coach

    L.A. Times: TSA ends contract with Rapiscan, maker of full-body scanner

    The Transportation Security Administration has ended a contract with the Hawthorne-based manufacturer of a controversial full-body scanner used to screen passengers. Rapiscan, a unit of OSI Systems Inc., manufactured about half of the full-body scanners used by the TSA to screen passengers for hidden weapons at airports across the country. But TSA officials said the agency has canceled its contract with the company because it had failed to deliver software to protect the privacy of passengers.
  2. Mike

    Mike Founding Member Coach

    Daily Finance: OSI Systems Announces Agreement with TSA

    Under the terms of the agreement, Rapiscan and TSA determined that the Secure 1000SP would not be ready to meet the next level of ATR software by the congressionally mandated June 2013 deadline.

    But they're not getting rid of the cancer machines, rather they are relocating them to other federal agencies where they're hoping the irradiated subjects (prisoners?) won't complain too loudly:

    As the Secure 1000SP has been operated by TSA as an effective imaging system, TSA plans to deploy these systems, with Rapiscan's assistance, to U.S. government agencies that already rely on the Secure 1000 product line or can enhance their security programs with the Secure 1000SP.

    Bottom line, nothing's really changing and Chertoff's kickbacks are secure:

    The agreement enables the U.S. government to continue to benefit from the investments made by TSA, while allowing TSA to meet the congressional ATR mandate. The agreement results in the mutually-agreed conclusion of ATR software development for the Secure 1000SP, but continues Rapiscan's overall contract with TSA for AIT systems.
  3. Mike

    Mike Founding Member Coach

    NewsMax: Naked-Image Scanners to Be Removed by TSA From Airports

    TSA will remove 174 Rapiscan machines from U.S. airports, with the company absorbing the cost, Karen Shelton Waters, the agency’s assistant administrator for acquisitions, said. The agency will replace the Rapiscan machines with 60 units manufactured by L-3 Communications Holdings Inc., the agency’s other body-scanner supplier.

    But see the other article above -- they're being moved, not removed.
    Fisher1949 likes this.
  4. Fisher1949

    Fisher1949 Original Member Coach

    Bloomberg: Naked-Image Scanners to Be Removed From U.S. Airports

    Bloomberg is saying they're gone. This would be quite a victory if true. They do seem to be on the way out, at least this generation of the Rape-Scan devices. Nonetheless, it doesn't absolve them for all of the harassment and child pornography they are guilty of committing over the past 5 years. Hopefully many lawsuits will follow.

  5. Elizabeth Conley

    Elizabeth Conley Original Member


    Here's my principal concern. These people irradiators are going to unknown federal agencies, probably within the DHS, which has demonstrated time and time again that they have absolute contempt for the safety of human beings. Who will the DHS irradiate next? When? Where? Will the victims have any choice? This is a matter of grave concern.

    We have an enormous umbrella agency, the DHS, that operates with wanton disregard for the rights and wellbeing of U.S. citizens. We should be shining a huge spotlight on everything they do and have done, until we're satisfied the DHS is either gone or reformed.
  6. TSA News Blog

    TSA News Blog News Feed

    As we reported here on September 3, 2012, the TSA last year started quietly removing the radiation-emitting backscatter (x-ray) scanners from airports and replacing them with millimeter wave scanners.
    This news was kept quiet, of course, only until the press found out about it. Even then, media reports often got the story wrong, implying, or stating outright as this Bloomberg story does, that all “naked-image scanners” are being removed, which is not true. Scanners will still be used at airports, only they will be millimeter wave scanners (also untested), with a generic outline of the body, not backscatter scanners.
    While the TSA at first tried to palm off the backscatter scanners onto smaller airports (don’t you people know that big-city slickers are more important than small-town peons?), it later became known that the agency was collecting the clunkers in a warehouse. Hey, your tax dollars at work.
    And still the story continued. One of the TSA’s favorite contractors, Rapiscan, was accused of falsifying its scanner data. Now it appears that the TSA can no longer pretend that Rapiscan’s machines are viable and will junk all of them. The claim is that the removal of the backscatter scanners has everything to do with their lack of “privacy-enhancing software” and nothing to do with the possibly falsified safety data.
    Yet even while the agency is doing that, it’s buying even more scanners.
    If you’re still not familiar with the two different types of scanners, you might think that a millimeter wave (MMW) scanner is a machine that magically “protects your privacy.” And that’s the story the TSA is pushing.
    In fact, as we’ve reported umpteen times, the MMW scanners have a 54% false positive rate. They alarm on seams. On pleats. On sweat. That means that even though you go through a scanner, you can still be hauled aside for a grope.
    In addition, the so-called “Gumby” or stick-figure image is merely what you, the passenger, sees. You have no idea if the scanner is still recording a naked image of you. Does it make sense to you that a machine ostensibly designed to look under people’s clothing wouldn’t have the capability of recording that information, if such information were ever to be needed later? That the only image recorded would be a fuzzy, generic image?
    Regardless, scanners aren’t leaving U.S. airports. Compliant passengers are still stepping into them and raising their arms in a pose of surrender.
    Perhaps that’s appropriate. Perhaps that’s entirely as it should be.
  7. RB

    RB Founding Member

    Some Consumer Rights group needs to sue to have these machines outlawed. Takes big money to fight government.
  8. FetePerfection

    FetePerfection Founding Member Coach

    And all that money down the drain... don't get me wrong, I'm not a fan but clearly DHS feels they have an endless supply of money to waste. What a money-pit-disorganization they are.
    KrazyKat and Elizabeth Conley like this.
  9. Mike

    Mike Founding Member Coach

    Fear not. They will be put to good use irradiating prisoners or illegal aliens, people who aren't in a position to decline the abuse.
  10. Mike

    Mike Founding Member Coach

  11. RB

    RB Founding Member

    Elizabeth Conley and KrazyKat like this.
  12. KrazyKat

    KrazyKat Original Member

  13. KrazyKat

    KrazyKat Original Member

    Wonderful retort to that column:
    phoebepontiac likes this.
  14. Caradoc

    Caradoc Original Member

    One of the comments on that "retort" reads,

    "There are numerous, decent, hard-working military vets among the bunch."

    No, there are not. There are ex-military (expletive deleted) who've taken a job with the TSA because they either managed to flounder through their tour without acquiring any useful skills, or possibly bought the Big Chicken Dinner and can't get hired for real work even if they have the skills.

    "Decent" humans would refuse the "job."
  15. RB

    RB Founding Member

    Almost every story about taking the Backscatter Strip Search Scanners out of airports fails to mention that some will be replaced with new Backscatter Strip Search Machines. Don't let that fact go by without jumping in and clarifying what TSA is really doing.
  16. Mike

    Mike Founding Member Coach

    Becky Akers @ LRCBlog: TSA Toys With the Serfs

    Media in all its guises – mainstream, alternative, print and broadcast – has been agog the last few days over the TSA’s retiring some of its porno-scanners from airports. Indeed, you might assume from all the hype that the TSA itself is disappearing; hard to believe the press can spare that much space and energy from its war on the Second Amendment and its ecstasy over the inauguration.

    In reality, the TSA is merely dislodging one type of gizmo that peers through your clothing while leaving another that does so in place. (And even then, it threatens to "reintroduce" its vacationing Peeping Toms someday.)

    Known as “backscatter X-rays,” the machines slated for exile rely on radiation to produce naked images of passengers, not only stripping victims but dosing them with carcinogenic beams, too. Naturally, the profoundly deceitful TSA has long insisted backscatter’s images weren’t naked at all, despite graphic evidence to the contrary. Nor was the radiation harmful. Right. And O-bomb-ya is a man of peace trying to protect the children when he steals our guns.

    The other contraption, the “millimeter-wave scanner,” will continue to haunt checkpoints, though now it's fitted with “privacy software.” Said software cloaks your nudity with a generic outline of a human form while highlighting those suspicious Kleenex and coins in your pockets.

    The shuffling of these utterly offensive gadgets allows Leviathan’s lovers in the press to bleat that the TSA has “end[ed] what critics called ‘virtual strip searches’" and that “those airport scanners with their all-too revealing body images will soon be going away.” Even folks who ought to know better, like the Electronic Privacy Information Center, called backscatter X-ray’s demise “big news. … It removes the concern that people are being viewed naked by the TSA screener."

    Well, only if you trust the TSA. Millimeter-wave scanners also photograph travelers naked; software transforms those pictures into gingerbread men. But software can fail, whether from a glitch or sabotage – if it’s installed at all. And despite the TSA and the media’s claims, millimeter-waves are as inimical to our flesh, if not more so, than X-rays; the technology is new enough that no one understands its precise effects on us, but evidence indicates it “unzips” DNA.

    Most tragic of all, the TSA’s unconstitutional, mass, warrantless searches will only accelerate now that everyone agrees it no longer jeopardizes our modesty and health.

    Meanwhile, what’s prompted an agency impervious to the public’s outrage and Constitutional requirements to toss its hated porno-scanners? Congress. Yep, the wusses finally strapped on one tiny, shrivelled cojone and ordered the TSA to install “privacy software” by June of 2013. The manufacturer of the millimeter-wave machines came up with said software; his competitor at the backscatter factory didn’t.
    Now, if Congress can tweak the TSA’s voyeurism, why can’t it abolish the agency entirely?

    Remember that question when another of the agency’s scandals grabs headlines and various congresscriminals excoriate their bureaucratic colleagues. Our Rulers are contemptible hypocrites and liars who, far from opposing the TSA, aid and abet it.
  17. Mike

    Mike Founding Member Coach

    Doug Barry @ Jezebel obviously gets it! :)

    Jezebel: Maker of Full-Body Scanners Loses Its TSA Contract to Humiliate Passengers at Airport Security Checkpoints

    According to the New York Times, the Transportation Security Administration announced that it has cancelled a contract, originally worth $40 million, with Rapiscan, the makers of those elephantine nudie-vision pods that have, over the last several years, managed what at first seemed impossible: making airport security lines move even more ponderously. Since Rapiscan failed to meet a Congressional deadline to implement new software aimed at protecting passenger privacy, the company will lose its deal with the TSA and be required to pay for removing its scanners from airports.

    So, should you expect airport security to be a little less invasive? (expletive deleted) no! What are you, a terrorist or something? Rapiscan may have just been nudged out of the airport security racket (their machines can still be found at a government agency near you), but a new type of full-body scanner will be taking the place of Rapiscan's old models.
  18. Mike

    Mike Founding Member Coach

    People so conventiently forget/ignore that the bid specifications for the L-3 MMW machines REQUIRE that they they be capable of saving the images.

    Just because it's showing you a Gumby in the public area of the checkpoint doesn't prevent it from saving your raw, unfiltered and NAKED image on a hard drive or uploading it somewhere.

    Let's not forget this fiasco from scarecely 2.5 years ago:

    CNET: Feds admit storing checkpoint body scan images

    U.S. Marshals Service acknowledges it surreptitiously recorded
    tens of thousands of images with a millimeter wave system at
    the security checkpoint in a Florida courthouse

    Now it turns out that some police agencies are storing the controversial images after all. The U.S. Marshals Service admitted this week that it had surreptitiously saved tens of thousands of images recorded with a millimeter wave system at the security checkpoint of a single Florida courthouse.

    This follows an earlier disclosure (PDF) by the TSA that it requires all airport body scanners it purchases to be able to store and transmit images for "testing, training, and evaluation purposes." The agency says, however, that those capabilities are not normally activated when the devices are installed at airports.

    "Not normally activated?" Has anyone ever figure out what's "normal" with TSA other than fraud and deceit?
  19. FliesWay2Much

    FliesWay2Much Original Member

    Looks like it was a termination for cause: http://www.gsnmagazine.com/node/28278?c=airport_aviation_security

    Chertoff still gets paid and they get to have the government pay to ship them all around the country and to establish new customers. I have to fly out of Dulles in about 3 weeks. Let's see if they are removed by then.
    Elizabeth Conley likes this.
  20. Elizabeth Conley

    Elizabeth Conley Original Member

    The TSA may have dumped the Rape/scam Corporation, but it looks like they are contracting with another company for Xray Backscatter equipment.

    There seems to be absolutely no good news in this pseudo-change whatsoever. It's just going to get harder and harder to figure out which machines are radiation hazards.


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