Feeds

The wrong stuff: what it takes to be a TSA terror suspect

ACLU files suit over no-fly list

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

The plaintiffs' statements in an American Civil Liberties Union lawsuit against the Department of Homeland Security and the Transport Security Administration provides some useful clues about what it takes to make the grade as a dangerous terror suspect. Career USAF Master Sergeant and mother of three? Retired Presbyterian Minister? ACLU special projects co-ordinator with Pakistani-type name?

Well yes, that last one might not have come entirely as a surprise to you, but the ACLU has chosen its sample plaintiffs well. They are all American citizens who've experienced repeated delays and embarrassments because they are on the shady 'no fly' list distributed to US airlines by the TSA. No reason for their presence on this list is obtainable, and there would appear to be no easy mechanism for getting off it.

According to the statement of Rev John F Shaw (71), when he complained to the TSA's Ombudsman's office a TSA agent explained "that the list is computer-generated and linked to another database known as CAPPS." The CAPPS link is a strong signal that the no fly list will in the future be substantially expanded as the TSA expands its use of airline passenger data.

The statements also indicate that the TSA itself has no ready mechanism for getting people off the list. It seems to agree with some of the plaintiffs that they're false positives, but they keep getting the treatment on subsequent flights anyway. Two of the plaintiffs have actually been given letters from the TSA verifying their identity, but one of these still experiences problems. The second, student Alexandra Hay, was given a personal escort through Philadelphia Airport by the TSA along with the letter after the ACLU threatened to sue on her behalf.

Attorney David Nelson meanwhile reports he has been stopped over 40 times, and that other people called David Nelson, including the one who's a sitcom star, have had similar problems. The ACLU is asking that the court declare that the no-fly list violates passengers' constitutional rights to freedom from unreasonable search and seizure and due process of law under the Fourth and Fifth Amendments. ®

Related link ACLU launches suit

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

More from The Register

next story
BBC: We're going to slip CODING into kids' TV
Pureed-carrot-in-ice cream C++ surprise
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
Twitter: La la la, we have not heard of any NUDE JLaw, Upton SELFIES
If there are any on our site it is not our fault as we are not a PUBLISHER
Facebook, Google and Instagram 'worse than drugs' says Miley Cyrus
Italian boffins agree with popette's theory that haters are the real wrecking balls
Sit tight, fanbois. Apple's '$400' wearable release slips into early 2015
Sources: time to put in plenty of clock-watching for' iWatch
Facebook to let stalkers unearth buried posts with mobe search
Prepare to HAUNT your pal's back catalogue
Ex-IBM CEO John Akers dies at 79
An era disrupted by the advent of the PC
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?