TSA Reaching Out to Police to Convince Them New Screening Procedures Aren’t Sexual Assault

With word out last week that the TSA planned to make pat downs ‘more intimate’ — reducing the number of pat down options just to the single, most-invasive kind — the TSA has been reaching out to local police in anticipation that some passengers will be calling to report sex assaults.

TSA decided to inform local police in case anyone calls to report an “abnormal” federal frisking, according to a memo from an airport trade association obtained by Bloomberg News.

…“Due to this change, TSA asked FSDs [field security directors] to contact airport law enforcement and brief them on the procedures in case they are notified that a passenger believes a [TSA employee] has subjected them to an abnormal screening practice,” ACI wrote.

Instead of using the back of the hands, “security screeners will use the front of their hands on a passenger in a private screening area if one of the prior screening methods indicates the presence of explosives.”

In other words, screening inspired by the nation’s new Chief Executive.

TSA believes that with the new pat down procedures, some passengers may not understand they haven’t been sexually assaulted.

“Passengers who have not previously experienced the now standardized pat-down screening may not realize that they did in fact receive the correct procedure, and may ask our partners, including law enforcement at the airport, about the procedure,” TSA spokesman Bruce Anderson wrote March 3 in an email, describing why the agency notified police.

What’s perhaps even more striking about the new pat down procedures is why TSA is doing this.

Earlier it was reported that this was a response, 18 months later, to revelations that the TSA failed to catch most of the things they were supposed to stop trying to go through the checkpoint.

However, as the airports association distributing information on this — and which does not object to the practice — notes, the extreme vetting of passenger genitalia is “intended to reduce the cognitive burden on [employees] who previously had to choose from various pat-down procedures depending on the type of screening lane” in other words so that TSA employees wouldn’t have to think so hard. #impossibletoparody

TSA it’s worth reminding that Denver screeners were caught manipulating the nude-o-scopes to ‘alarm’ so that they could fondle attractive passengers.

TSA used to stand for ‘taking scissors away’ now it stands for ‘twisted sexual assualt’:

(HT: @ccoyne1)

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. I’ve received it twice since it was instituted. I’ve wrestled so having a hand or body part around my groin doesn’t bother me but I can’t see how a rape survivor would survive this without breaking down. Mine was “intimate” enough I almost asked for a cigarette.

  2. It would only be unacceptable and unconstitutional if it had been proposed/implemented by the black president (the dictator).

    Since it came from the white clown (the dic), all is fine with deplorables.

  3. It’s a joke. A month ago my 7 year old was flagged in PreCheck for a secondary screening. He somehow failed the hand swab test. They were ready to pat him down but then decided that I’d have the full pat down. It’s a terrible procedure and I can completely understand how some would call the police. TSA is a joke; I’m glad my son didn’t need the patdown but at the same time it just showed me that TSA doesn’t want to pat down those who flag. Or maybe they just need to try the swab a 2nd time. Either way it’s a clear hole in security

  4. the TSA has been reaching out to local police in anticipation that some passengers will be calling to report sex assaults.

    They _do_ say that they will move their hands until they meet resistance. I guess this is resistance.

  5. I got groped on my last trip. Walked thru the detector, a buzzer went off (I thought the metal zippers in my sweat pants were the culprit) and the guy grabs my junk. The grin on his face didn’t help as he informed me the buzzers for this type pat down were random. I’m retired ATC, if I had wanted to do some damage I could have when I was pushing tin.

  6. Wow Gary, you lasted almost 2 full days without a ‘Trump Derangement Syndrome’ post. Then apparently the pressure broke thru, and your head exploded.

    This was even more stupid than usual, since there is no reason whatsoever to include Mike Pence when mentioning that decades old private comment that Trump made without knowing it would go beyond the person to whom he said it.

    You have no idea how many people will never use one of your affiliate links again due to this endless anti-Trump carping. And many of them will never tell you that, since they have stopped bothering to read this blog. Ironically, the liberals who will like your denigration of the POTUS will never be fans of this blog either, since to them you seem too pro-capitalist.

    Frankly, there is virtually nothing one will find here that can’t be found on One Mile At A Time, not to mention FT.

    Oh, wait, I know one thing one will find here far more often than on OMAAT: click bait posts, and misleading titles that have little or nothing to do with the content. 😉

  7. Wow @Robert Hanson it was a joke that was just screaming out to be made, and as I’ve always said I write what’s on my mind and interesting, not everyone gets or likes my sense of humor and that’s ok!

  8. Some people need to learn how to read. Seriously, RIF.

    “Instead of using the back of the hands, ‘security screeners will use the front of their hands on a passenger in a private screening area if one of the prior screening methods indicates the presence of explosives.'”

    “…if one of the prior screening methods indicates a presence of explosives.”

    So which of you morons believes a cute little pat down using the back of their hands to within three inches of your junk provides security when they have reason to suspect explosives? Gee, maybe we should force police officers to conduct genteel frisks of suspected criminals, too.

    If they ever disband the Whiny Little Bitch Club just what will you people do to occupy your free time?

  9. Just because TSA says it’s not sexual assault doesn’t mean it’s not sexual assault.

  10. @Gary
    It wasn’t a “joke” it was just you still butthurt that Corrupt Hillary didn’t win. I’d enjoy your journalism much more if you’d just stuck to the facts instead of cheap political shots when you can take them.

  11. Were we expecting any different from an administration headed by “grab ’em” Donald?

  12. To be honest, I’m kind of tired of the Trump bashing too. I’m here to talk travel……

  13. @Robert Hanson, @Joe, the stupidest person in the room is always too stupid to realize it. Most everyone else does, though.

  14. Oh god I am so angry that your private blog offended me. My political views are the best political views and my first amendment rights were trampled when your private blog that I voluntarily navigated to didn’t say the words that I wanted it to. If you don’t immediately change your tune, I will report you to the government, tell my friends to stop reading your blog, and make sure that I never click on your credit card links. THAT WILL TEACH YOU!

  15. Back of the hand, uhh no. And it wasn’t in private, it was right past the metal detector. Maybe you’re OK with some guy grabbing your junk, I’m not. Particularly when a visual inspection and the fact I just walked through a metal detector would have sufficed. And if he suspected me of anything, he never told me.

    Whiny little bitch…..I’ll take your word for it.

  16. I have been sexually assaulted, and I have been patted down, a few times. My most recent pat down (heading home from Morocco 1 1/2 years ago) was quite intimate, and did indeed feel like sexual assault.
    BTW I appreciated the joke.

  17. @Anonymous coward – You’ve made exactly the right point. They are trying to pre-empt charges of assault and sexual harassment by saying it isn’t. Sorry, saying you’re not about to assault someone is no defense if you then actually do it. I’d love to see some of these people reported to the police, and lawsuits filed. Enough of this humiliation of innocent people.

  18. This is beyond absurd. After installing x-rays, nude-o-trons, chemical swab stations, and instituting the idiotic 100-ml limit on liquids, we somehow have a need to aggressively pat-down travelers in American airports. Question: How many false positives have been flagged, versus the number of true positive cases where explosives were involved? Seems like a big charade, like ‘security theater’.

    As we escalate our security posturing, I worry that we’re building a false belief in our real ability to protect ourselves from threats. If you want to see how ineffective strong security can be against a determined opponent, just ask the CIA how well their digital defenses were at keeping the Vault 7 code secret, or the NSA with the Snowden leaks. You’ll understand if I don’t have full faith that the TSA will really prevent something bad from happening.

    I suggest we accept that bad things can happen, and figure out the best way to mitigate a breach, rather than contributing to the fairy tale that we can perfectly prevent an attack from happening. Who knows, by being smarter about aviation security, we might actually make flying safer and more enjoyable again!

  19. I have been groped by numerous TSA agents, especially at LAX. They were anything but gentle and professional. I’m not even a sexual assault survivor and I felt violated. I do not think this is good security; Europe does it much better, without some illiterate grabbiing your private parts. The TSA’s notification of law enforcement is a preemptive strike on their part, but that does not mean that if it happens again, I won’t call them. They may not be able to do much, but they are going to get tired of the calls. I think applying this sort of pressure–and pressure from air carriers–is our best bet to have real security as opposed to security theater. The treatment during patdowns would have anyone else arrested and jailed.

  20. And if it had been gentle and professional you’d be whining about how it had gotten you horny.

  21. I have to travel for work and I almost have panic attacks as I approach the scanners due to the TSA. It doesn’t matter where the yellow boxes show; if they want to touch your private parts, they will. I am waiting for marriage, but I already feel spoiled due to being sexually assaulted by the TSA. I’m waiting for the day that they will be allowed to rape me and say that they were utilizing their male parts as a search tool to see if I am hiding anything in my female parts. How ludicrous!

  22. Having an intense frisk search by a TSA Officer may not be a pleasant experience but necessary to screen out weapons and plastic explosives. I always prefer to opt out whenever the choice is the scanner or a pat down search. I have experienced the open hand frisking and this is the only proper method for detecting something hidden under the clothing. TSA officers have missed to many contraband items during tests. Terrorists and narcotic traffickers hide weapons and contraband around their private parts under their clothing, for men especially around the scrotum and up their rectums so this means the officer must feel these private areas. If the scanner shows some abnormal then you will undergo a pat down search. There are suicidal terrorists who are seeking another opportunity to explode bombs on planes so I accept the enhanced pat down searches as necessary for our safety. I know that this is hard for victims of sexual abuse but the scanner is the alternative and sometimes all you do is pass through a metal detector and your home free.

  23. Are people so sensitive or insecure they worry about the scanner or a pay down? Haven’t all of you showered with others in gym class or on a sports team? If so the scanner is no problem. As for the pat down I had it a few flights ago at precheck (random). Guy explained what he was going to do and asked if I would like a private area. Thanks told him i was fine right there so he did it beside the metal detector. I have problem w it as he was doing his job. If you don’t like it drive, take the train or ride a bus. The government has put this in, rightly or wrongly, as a condition of air travel. I can’t wait to hear the whining when the Real ID requirements go in effect in 2020.

    Oh yeah – I can’t imagine any situation, outside of actually rape in a private area, where a person could successfully pursue civil or criminal charges associated with a pay down down by a TSA agent in the performance of their duties so just get over yourselves and move on.

  24. @AC I can answer your first question.

    People like to be whiny little bitches and cry when things don’t go their way. They have no control in their job, their kids, their spouse … even their bowel movements. Their only hope of avoiding suicide is trying to control an obscure TSA process. And they fail at that, too. Thankfully.

  25. The compassionate one returns. At least shes not reaching out to random people online on New Years Eve as she has nowhere to go and no one to be with.

  26. 747imaginary: You should work a double shift digging through Mumbai sewage. Use the extra money for antibiotics to control your syph infection. Then, perhaps, you could express coherent thoughts.

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