The TSA has been hit with a lawsuit just days after it quietly introduced new rules that banned the ability of travelers to opt out of the agency’s controversial naked body scanners.
“In a document published earlier this month, the Department of Homeland Security outlined an update to the Advanced Imagery Technology protocols used by the TSA at US airports, adding a clause which allows officers to insist travelers go through the controversial machines,” reported SlashGear.
The federal agency now insists it has the right to “direct mandatory AIT screening for some passengers,” even if they refuse.
Activist Jonathan Corbett, who famously exposed TSA body scanners to be completely useless in detecting items concealed in hidden pockets, wasted no time in filing a lawsuit in an attempt to restore a traveler’s right to opt out of the scanner.
The TSA shall receive on Friday a petition that asks the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit to consider: 1) whether the body scanner program is constitutional when the option to opt-out is removed, and 2) whether the TSA must engage in “notice & comment rulemaking” before making such a change.
You all may remember that in 2013, the TSA “invited” (after being forced to by the Court of Appeals as a result of EPIC’s lawsuit) the public to submit comments regarding the nude body scanner program. Over 5,500 of us replied, and well over 95% of the comments were in opposition. The TSA still hasn’t responded to those comments, but yet feels that it can remove the opt-out procedure without again asking the public or considering our feelings regarding the scanners even with the opt-out option.
Given the timing, Corbett even personally gift-wrapped the lawsuit for the TSA.
Earlier this year, Corbett also lifted the lid on a hitherto secret TSA program which mandates that airlines operating outside of the U.S. conduct invasive security interviews of travelers before allowing them to return to America.
Read the lawsuit in full via the links below.
Corbett v. TSA IV – Petition (.pdf)