CES tech show adds new security checks after fears of violence

Expect the show to be even more painful than usual

The annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas is renowned for being crowded – 170,000 people attended last year – but new security restrictions will mean that the traditional lines to get in are going to be exponentially worse.

"Due to recent global tragedies, we have new security procedures for CES. This includes bag restrictions as well as additional security measures that you will need to know before coming to CES," the organizers said.

"We want you to have a safe CES experience. We are implementing these enhanced measures with the goal of maintaining the safety of all of our guests – attendees, exhibitors, members of the media – and show personnel while creating as little inconvenience as possible. Please review the following new measures."

The new restrictions mean everyone wanting to get into the conference venue will be subject to a bag search, and bags can't be larger than 12" x 17" x 6" (30cm x 43cm x 15cm). No luggage or rolling bags of any kind will be allowed into the venue, meaning those heading from the show to the airport will have to make an extra stop.

In addition, the organizers will be installing metal detectors for everyone entering, and security will be on hand to administer patdowns. Police officers in armored gear and explosive detection dogs will also be roaming the show halls.

If you are going to bring a bag, the organizers suggest something mesh, plastic, or vinyl to speed up the process. "Bags and backpacks with many pockets are not helpful," they warn.

There are going to be some exceptions to the new rules. CES exhibitors and credentialed members of the press get a special dispensation on the searches, presumably on the grounds that if you're spending money on the show (or under the aegis of a strict editor) you're unlikely to bomb it.

The Consumer Electronics Association hasn't responded to requests for just why the new security restrictions are going to be in place, but the current concern in the US about mass shootings (foreign or domestically inspired) might have something to do with it. ®

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