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Old Aug 10, 11, 1:13 pm   #1
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Pilots are bypassing ORD security, as TSA & Union forget all about EgyptAir 990

The Chicago Tribune has an August 10, 2011 article posted describing how pilots no longer are subject to security at O'Hare (ORD) Airport. Here's the link:

Chicago Tribune: Pilots flying through security

Here is a short quote of the article:
TSA officials use laptop computers to verify the identification of pilots and their employment status by checking multiple photo IDs and real-time airline data.
Hope they figure out a real good way to secure that laptop computer, else a TSO might ebay it... another short quote:
The pilots then go through a crew lane at each checkpoint without undergoing body-scan imaging, walking through metal detectors, submitting to pat-downs or removing their shoes or jackets, officials said. Their carry-on bags are not searched either.


Hmmm, if the laptop computer shows your picture on it, you get to take whatever you want around the checkpoint... gee, what could possibly go wrong?

"It was a very pleasurable experience. I didn't have to disrobe,'' said Sean Cassidy, a captain at Alaska Airlines who is also first vice president of the pilots union. "And the process helps the TSA redefine its focus on finding potential threats among passengers.''


Divided and conquered...
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Old Aug 10, 11, 1:17 pm   #2
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Originally Posted by RatherBeOnATrain View Post
The Chicago Tribune has an August 10, 2011 article posted describing how pilots no longer are subject to security at O'Hare (ORD) Airport. Here's the link:

Chicago Tribune: Pilots flying through security

Here is a short quote of the article:
TSA officials use laptop computers to verify the identification of pilots and their employment status by checking multiple photo IDs and real-time airline data.
Hope they figure out a real good way to secure that laptop computer, else a TSO might ebay it... another short quote:
The pilots then go through a crew lane at each checkpoint without undergoing body-scan imaging, walking through metal detectors, submitting to pat-downs or removing their shoes or jackets, officials said. Their carry-on bags are not searched either.


Hmmm, if the laptop computer shows your picture on it, you get to take whatever you want around the checkpoint... gee, what could possibly go wrong?

"It was a very pleasurable experience. I didn't have to disrobe,'' said Sean Cassidy, a captain at Alaska Airlines who is also first vice president of the pilots union. "And the process helps the TSA redefine its focus on finding potential threats among passengers.''


Divided and conquered...

No Security Hole with this practice.
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Old Aug 10, 11, 1:27 pm   #3
  
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Loss of the computer is no big deal if it is set up properly. The data is not on the laptop, the laptop is simply a tool to access the database which should be on a secure server somewhere far far away. Knowing how inept TSA is at everything else, it is possible the username is "TSA" and password is "password" to get into the database - then you have a problem.

Take whatever you want? Just like cleaners, caterers and hundreds of other workers that pass in and out of the secure area daily with whatever they like.

Egyptair 990 was driven into the ocean by the pilot. He didn't need any prohibited items, which is exactly why making pilots take their shoes off all these years has been a pointless waste of resources.
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Old Aug 10, 11, 1:39 pm   #4
  
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Egyptair 990 was driven into the ocean by the pilot. He didn't need any prohibited items, which is exactly why making pilots take their shoes off all these years has been a pointless waste of resources.
Of course, there's FedEx 705.

On the other hand, the co-pilot typically sits next to a fire ax. Taking away prohibited items in that instance is pointless.

And taking away prohibited items from someone who has the stick and throttle is also pointless.
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Old Aug 10, 11, 1:47 pm   #5
  
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On the other hand, the co-pilot typically sits next to a fire ax. Taking away prohibited items in that instance is pointless.

And taking away prohibited items from someone who has the stick and throttle is also pointless.
That's absolutely true. And I mean no disrespect to pilots by insisting they might be involved in any disastrous plot. However, consider two possible scenarios:

- a pilot's child or spouse is kidnapped and he's forced to carry a sealed envelope through security, no questions asked
- a pilot is part of a plot, but to keep his role from being revealed, so they can make repeated use of him, he carries things through security and gives them to another bad guy

I'm not taking sides in this, merely pointing out that not screening pilots because they have the ability to crash the plane isn't foolproof.
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Old Aug 10, 11, 1:53 pm   #6
  
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Originally Posted by SFOSpiff View Post
That's absolutely true. And I mean no disrespect to pilots by insisting they might be involved in any disastrous plot. However, consider two possible scenarios:

- a pilot's child or spouse is kidnapped and he's forced to carry a sealed envelope through security, no questions asked
- a pilot is part of a plot, but to keep his role from being revealed, so they can make repeated use of him, he carries things through security and gives them to another bad guy

I'm not taking sides in this, merely pointing out that not screening pilots because they have the ability to crash the plane isn't foolproof.
Sure, it's not foolproof. Making security foolproof results in one of two outcomes:

1) An inability of the "secured" business to function, and/or
2) Nature provides a better fool
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Old Aug 10, 11, 2:59 pm   #7
  
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And taking away prohibited items from someone who has the stick and throttle is also pointless.
I would argue that not everyone who wants to harm people wants to be a martyr. As SFOSpiff mentions, there are numerous scenarios where a pilot could smuggle something in that would cause damage over and above (or different) than what they could just using their plane.

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Originally Posted by OldGoat View Post
Sure, it's not foolproof. Making security foolproof results in one of two outcomes:
You have hit on the exact point. TSA willingly allows huge holes in security to exist while focusing on only one specific group - passengers. In their attempt to make it impossible for a passenger to get anything through they appear more than willing to ignore all other threats.
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Old Aug 10, 11, 5:19 pm   #8
  
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Airline Employees!

IF airline employees are allowed access to the secure ramp area of any airport they work at without being screened then ALL uniformed properly id'd airline employees should have access without being screened.
ALL have been photographed, fingerprinted, and had a background check by law enforcement.
I mean at a major airport like LAX there are Thousands walking the field that simply walked on without screening so I
can't get excited IF uniformed Pilots & Flt. Attendents do the same.
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Old Aug 10, 11, 6:56 pm   #9
  
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Originally Posted by SFOSpiff View Post
That's absolutely true. And I mean no disrespect to pilots by insisting they might be involved in any disastrous plot. However, consider two possible scenarios:

- a pilot's child or spouse is kidnapped and he's forced to carry a sealed envelope through security, no questions asked
- a pilot is part of a plot, but to keep his role from being revealed, so they can make repeated use of him, he carries things through security and gives them to another bad guy

I'm not taking sides in this, merely pointing out that not screening pilots because they have the ability to crash the plane isn't foolproof.
How is this any different than an Air Marshall who is already known to be armed? Real life isn't a Steven Segal movie. You can never account for the most bizarre and extreme scenarios that are imaginable.
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Old Aug 10, 11, 7:08 pm   #10
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IF airline employees are allowed access to the secure ramp area of any airport they work at without being screened then ALL uniformed properly id'd airline employees should have access without being screened.
ALL have been photographed, fingerprinted, and had a background check by law enforcement.
That was the rule in 1972. And there was *not* any background check. I was a busboy in the restaurant and my airport picture ID allowed me to walk around the security checkpoint. Although (under my understanding of the statistics) airline personnnel have intentionally killed more passengers than terrorists have, I am not aware of any airline passenger deaths resulting from allowing photo id badged airport employees to avoid security. [PSA was unauthorized use of employee door, so that one doesn't count in my view]
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Old Aug 10, 11, 7:35 pm   #11
  
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How is this any different than an Air Marshall who is already known to be armed? Real life isn't a Steven Segal movie. You can never account for the most bizarre and extreme scenarios that are imaginable.
Sigh; I thought it was obvious from my post that my point was to dispel the notion that the only way a pilot would beat the system is by crashing the plane. The examples, while far-fetched, were illustrative.

To answer your point, go back to the mid 1990's and ask people how likely it was that the last few pages of a Tom Clancy book would actually happen.

I'm not suggesting that they should act on every bizarre and extreme idea. Do we need radiation detectors at the airport in case someone is involved with a nuclear bomb plot? Should we swab hands for traces of cyanide in case someone plans to poison the FA's coffee?
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Old Aug 10, 11, 8:59 pm   #12
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Originally Posted by SFOSpiff View Post
However, consider two possible scenarios:

- a pilot's child or spouse is kidnapped and he's forced to carry a sealed envelope through security, no questions asked
- a pilot is part of a plot, but to keep his role from being revealed, so they can make repeated use of him, he carries things through security and gives them to another bad guy
Here's a third possible scenario: the bad guys trail uniformed crew members leaving the employee lot... in ATL, you can do that simply by riding the same MARTA train. The bad guys use their trailing to find a crew member or crew members that live alone. They then kidnap or murder them, taking their uniform(s) and ID badge(s). The bad guys then use those materials to walk right by security and get on whatever plane(s) they want, carrying whatever material(s) they want. (You would think that someone up at TSA would be familiar with "Law and Order" reruns, but evidently not.)

Some TSO will try to argue that this can't happen because the TSOs are comparing the badges to the person, but that is hardly a difficult problem to get around.
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Old Aug 10, 11, 9:32 pm   #13
  
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Sorry folks, the only viable scenarios have been fleshed out by the TSA and they are 1) liquid passenger suicide bomber, 2) underwear passenger suicide bomber, and 3) gun/knife/lighter/screwdriver passenger suicide non-bomber. Nothing else could possibly happen.
All said suicidal actors will have fake ID, of course.
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Old Aug 10, 11, 10:32 pm   #14
  
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Sorry folks, the only viable scenarios have been fleshed out by the TSA and they are 1) liquid passenger suicide bomber, 2) underwear passenger suicide bomber, and 3) gun/knife/lighter/screwdriver passenger suicide non-bomber. Nothing else could possibly happen.
All said suicidal actors will have fake ID, of course.
Um, did you forget 4) shoe-wearing passenger suicide bomber?
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Old Aug 11, 11, 2:20 pm   #15
  
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Um, did you forget 4) shoe-wearing passenger suicide bomber?
Yes! Forgot that one!
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