Tuesday, May 5, 2015

No full screening for airport workers, is it needed?

No full screening for airport workers - CNN.com

A big part of the security of an airport or any other business for that matter is the working folks.  We need their eyes and ears to help us find the bad guys.    Airports are small cities, sometimes are big cities.  To think you can search every vehicle and person that enters one is dreaming.  I have seen baggage handlers slow down to pick up a suitcase that seems to have fallen off another baggage cart, but is really there to mark where items, in this case computer games, are thrown over the fence to be picked up by cohorts on the other side.  When gun;s or narcotics need to be smuggled, then the reverse is used, people throw items over the fence to be picked up and delivered to planes, already secured.   I can go on and on, if you do not have the vast majority of workers on your side, being the eyes and ears, then security is not possible.

Just one of the unintended consequences of 100% screening is when do the workers clock in. Before screening and all the time thru screening falls on the employer, after screening all the time thru screening falls on the worker.  In each case the cost of the plane ticket has to go up, plus you have now just said to the folks whose eyes and ears are needed to find bad guys, we do not trust you.  If you do not trust them, how do you expect them to help us. Insider threats are always there, in fact in nuclear facilities red team tests, insider threats always were successful.  

It reminds me of the screening of pilots after 911, and I would see a TSA screener act like they had caught Ben Ladin himself when they found a small blade on the fingernail clippers in the pilots bag.  I have searched airplanes for over 35 years now, and I know there is a fire axe inside the cockpit of every major airplane, along with scissors and small knives in the First aid kit.   Yet if you did have a pilot near the edge mentally you have just pushed him over.  There are a lot of unintended consequences with 100% screening, not to mention any airport over 20 years old has not been designed for it, and the cost to get them there both operationally and monetarily would be huge.

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