Feeds

New anonymity rule on Euro airport body scanners

Nudie-watching staff kept away from passengers

New hybrid storage solutions

The European Commission has adopted new rules for the use of body scanners at airports.

From now on, any European Union country that wants to use the controversial technology with have to do so "under strict operational and technical conditions", the EC said in a statement.

"Security scanners are not a panacea but they do offer a real possibility to reinforce passenger security," Transport Commissioner Siim Kallas said in the statement.

"It is still for each Member State or airport to decide whether or not to deploy security scanners, but these new rules ensure that where this new technology is used it will be covered by EU-wide standards on detection capability as well as strict safeguards to protect health and fundamental rights."

Under the new legislation, security scanners can't store, copy, print or retrieve images and any unauthorised access and use of the image is prohibited: fairly rudimentary stuff. But interestingly, the regulations also stipulate that the person looking at the image should be in a separate location and the image and the person should not be linked in any way (presumably unless they do turn out to be a terrorist).

Passengers must be informed about the conditions under which the body scan is taking place, and they have the right to refuse to do it as long as they accept an alternative method of screening.

"By laying down specific operational conditions and by providing passengers with the possibility of opting out, the legislation safeguards fundamental rights and the principles recognised in particular by the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union," the EC said.

X-ray doesn't mark the spot

On the technology side, the main concern for the EU is health and safety. The Commission's rules state that only security scanners that don't use X-ray tech are authorised for passenger screening.

"All other technologies, such as that used for mobiles phones and others, can be used provided that they comply with EU security standards," the Commission added.

EU countries including the UK, Finland, Germany and France have already been trialling body scanners, despite the ongoing controversy surrounding the technology. The main concerns are the health and safety ones about being bombarded by X-rays or other radiation and the human rights ones about a camera that essentially takes a nude picture of passengers.

In July, America's Transport Security Administration made some concessions to those who objected to being photographed in the nip by rolling out a new software that presents a generic human form with any discovered objects on the actual person super-imposed, rather than that person's actual naked outline. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
Show us your Five-Eyes SECRETS says Privacy International
Refusal to disclose GCHQ canteen menus and prices triggers Euro Human Rights Court action
Heavy VPN users are probably pirates, says BBC
And ISPs should nab 'em on our behalf
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
Former Bitcoin Foundation chair pleads guilty to money-laundering charge
Charlie Shrem plea deal could still get him five YEARS in chokey
NORKS ban Wi-Fi and satellite internet at embassies
Crackdown on tardy diplomatic sysadmins providing accidental unfiltered internet access
'Serious flaws in the Vertigan report' says broadband boffin
Report 'fails reality test' , is 'simply wrong' and offers ''convenient' justification for FTTN says Rod Tucker
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile
Data demand and the rise of virtualization is challenging IT teams to deliver storage performance, scalability and capacity that can keep up, while maximizing efficiency.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.