A video is circulating (which i posted yesterday) purporting to show how easy it is to foil TSA’s nude-o-scopes, rendering them useless as a tool for averting actual terrorists, they’ll catch only folks who aren’t actually out to purposely fool the machines like people who forget they’re carrying things through the checkpoint that they aren’t supposed to.
They don’t deny the claims made in the video. Instead they say that they test the machines before rollout, the machines have detected stuff, the machines aren’t the only thing they do for security anyway.
Oh, and it’s better to have (flawed, easily foiled) machines than not to have them (without factoring in cost and whatever else they might do for security instead..) And of course the machines are optional anyway, which has nothing to do with the criticism.
In other words, “Look! Shiny things!” let’s distract from the expensive machines we’ve bought and make people go through, possibly exposing travelers to unneeded radiation for no security benefit while compromising privacy rights in the process.
It’s most telling that they try to dismiss “some guy” who made the video but don’t ever deny that the machines can be easily foiled in the way laid out, a simple sewing kit creating a pocket in the side of a shirt so that metallic items appear against the machine’s imaging background rather than against the graphic of the traveler’s body.
I didn’t have a strong independent opinion of the validity of the claims in the video, TSA’s response suggests to me that the claims are more credible than i would have imagined.