Delta to Test New Airport Security Plan
Delta Air Lines will begin testing a new government plan for air security next month that will check background information and assign a threat level to everyone who buys a ticket for a commercial flight.
The system, ordered by Congress after the Sept. 11 attacks, will gather much more information on passengers than has been done previously. Delta will try it out at three undisclosed airports, and a comprehensive system could be in place by the end of the year. Transportation officials say a contractor will be picked soon to build the nationwide computer system, which will check such things as credit reports and bank account activity and compare passenger names with those on government watch lists. Civil liberties groups and activists are objecting to the plan, seeing the potential for unconstitutional invasions of privacy and for database mix-ups that could lead to innocent people being branded security risks. “This system threatens to create a permanent blacklisted underclass of Americans who cannot travel freely,” said Katie Corrigan, a lawyer for the American Civil Liberties Union. There also is concern that the government is developing the system without revealing how information will be gathered and how long it will be kept. Full Story