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back to article PM: UK airports to get perv scanners next week

Gordon Brown today said body scanners will be introduced in UK airports next week. The PM didn't say which airports or who will be scanned. The Home Secretary has suggested travellers will be selected for scanning by profiling techniques, prompting concerns from the human rights watchdog. A spokeswoman for the largest airport …

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Anonymous Coward

but why

but why not just get sniffer dogs?

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Why?

'Cos your mate isn't on the board of directors or you're not looking for a juicy directorship at a doggy company after your incompetent arse is voted out. That's why. Effectiveness has nothing to do with it.

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Bloody hell!

How much more will the average traveller need to endure?

And when this current level of security is decreased, will that mean the scanners will be decommissioned?

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Black Helicopters

actually....

levels of security have *never* decreased.

they only ever increase... these machines wont be decommissioned, they will be upgraded or replaced with whatever comes next.

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Big Brother

At least it resolves the age old question

Is that an incendiary device in your pocket or are you just pleased to see me?

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It's not so bad

I'm fine with this new system if it helps them with their security theater. My only concern - I hope I don't have an erection when I'm being scanned by one of those. They might laugh.

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Alert

Re: It's not so bad

unless you get done for Sexual harrasment. A coincidental erection, a nervous tick mistaken for a wink and bam! A lifetime on sex offenders register for you!

*serious face* Other than potential for giggles from scanner operators, what will the repercussions of an overexcited male being full body scanned be? Lewd behavior? Indecent exposure? ...Won't someone please think of the women/children...

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Not so bad?

They will not laugh, but they will add you to the sex offenders DB.

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Re: It's not so bad

Do you often find invasive security checks that stimulating?

If so I'm sure you could request the full body cavity search.

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Pointless

The thing that people seem to be missing is that airport security already works. Nobody is managing to get effective bombs onto planes as it is. The 'Christmas Day Bomber' only managed to smuggle aboard a device that set him on fire a bit.

I wish we could stop wasting so much time and money on this shit.

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Govmt : How can we stop people flying?

If we legislate against it people will say its a breach of their human rights.

OK lets make security lax then a terrorist will blow up a plane and then we can tighten up security and make the buggers hang around the airport for longer than it takes to walk there.

Brilliant!

...

Er thats not working - people are still flying abroad!

I know lets make them show us heir tits! That'll stop flying to magaloof to sunbathe topless....

Kafka was a deranged optimist!

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Anonymous Coward

The title is too long

"Doubts have been raised over whether they would have detected Umar Farouk Abdul Mutallab's device concealed in his underwear."

'cos they have run tests since Christmas to check this out haven't they?

Haven't they?

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Joke

Shares in Bacofoil to rise

Now all the nutters will need tin-foil pants to go with their lovely shiny hats

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Pointless

If the current laws prohibit the scanning of under 18's then it's pointless from a security point of view. Just a waste of money.

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Boffin

Always an unhappy employee somewhere.....

You can put all the machines you want in the airport, and it wouldn't change a thing... If some baggage handlers can get away with digging through your luggage and taking things, what stops them from putting explosives in your luggage just before take off?

All you need is one unhappy sucker from security/cleaning/luggage/cabin crew etc. and you have a hole in a billion pound system. The amount of fake passports and documents flying about the UK make it possible for suicidal wannabe's to apply for work at any airport. Should they be effective enough to get the job the scanners won't help anyone.

The high grade explosives needed for real damage can be difficult enough to get hold of. All the other bloke got was roasted nuts with the crap he was given.....

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@Always an unhappy employee somewhere

That's ok cos they'll have ID cards - with the magic ani-terrorism features

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Anonymous Coward

Always a dodgy airport somewhere...

And no-one really concentrated on the fact that the guy travelled from Nigeria and could have been waved through security there for all we get to hear.

After having read disturbing stuff about baggage handlers actually wearing stuff they've pulled out of luggage (http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2005/04/08/1340901.htm) - pertinent to various drugs-related trials going on at the time - should the focus not actually be on what airport insiders might be getting up to, rather than installing huge amounts of equipment and pestering the average hassled traveller all the time?

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Dodgy airports....

So the government has decided to ban direct flights to the UK from Yemen, which will be really effective against would-be terrorists who haven't yet worked out how to change planes and arrive from somewhere nice and secure like Amsterdam.

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Coat

so what......

If it is quicker to get through security via the scanner then I am all for it.....

What’s the problem? Are the pictures going to be published in hello magazine? Maybe some freak will be getting his or her rocks off at the images, but no more than the people who do the pat down searches get there rocks off...

One of the biggest issues I have getting through a airport to the departure gate is the droves of fuckwits who fail to use common sense and fail to read and understand simple instructions....

one time I was getting a flight to Florida, one woman was kicking off over a tub of cream for her babies bum . They would not let her take it on the plane.... she had the biggest tub of cream I had ever seen in my life, it was like a bucket... and this was back when the clear Ziploc bags and no bigger than 100ml of each liquid or cream was first introduced. She must have heard it on the news... how much cream do you need over one flight? Surely a little 50ml tub would have done and put the big one in the baggage... or buy one when you get to where you’re going....

the amount of people carrying xmas presents in hand luggage all wrapped up, and were going mad because they wouldn’t let them on unless it was unwrapped, then cans of deodorant removed etc.... it was a nightmare....

Both my daughter and I are both diabetic, and had a full complement of diabetic equipment, including needles and insulin, just as deadly to a non diabetic as a gun. But we had no problems. Why? Because we knew the rules, had letters from the doctor (which wasn’t even looked at) and only carried what we needed for the flight....

If you’re flying anywhere, you know the rules, it makes no difference if the rules are justified or not, they are there and have to be followed

In the words of our future prime minister, Jeremy Clarkson, how hard can it be?

mines the one thats been pre-searched...

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Stop

Selfish git

To paraphrase your argument "As long as it doesn't inconvenience me, it is alright".

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Just because it's a rule doesn't make it right.

When did "I don't want strangers to look at me naked" stop being a reasonable position?

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Pathetic waste of time

All the demonstrations of this machinery show people hiding knives or guns, these are easily detected by much less expensive scanners which are already in place.

It's already been admitted that these new scanners don't detect things like the partial bomb the would be Chistmas bomber had strapped to his leg.

This is the government paying lip service to keep people calm and prevent panic, it's nothing more than this. It's also a complete waste of money, a lot of money.

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Joke

Profiles, in more ways than one

Will fat people [1] be subject to more suspicion than thin people on the grounds that they likely have more explosives '"up 'em" ?

Or will this be more traditional - prejudicial - profiling, when you happen to look non-white, maybe Arab, and someone has a hunch you might not be following the right deity ?

If the next so-called Jihadic terrorism on a plane is perpetrated by someone white, from the home counties, dressed as a vicar, exploding their undies it's going to be interesting what the authorities do next.

[1] Fat, obese, overweight, larger, big-boned, chubby, cuddly, bloody nuisance when next to me in a seat - take your personal pick.

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Skint

I'm almost glad the recession means I can't afford to fly off on holiday any more. Almost.

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Unhappy

Grounded

This really is getting to be the last straw.

Flying today is a pretty unpleasant experience as it is. I think I'll just give up on it altogether if they start insisting on this crap.

Time to buy that boat I've been promising myself...

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Anonymous Coward

Agreed

I haven't bothered renewing my passport since it expired - I've really no desire to fly anymore :/

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Big Brother

That's why you have to get an ID card

See title

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Inevitable and unstoppable

"...The Home Secretary has suggested travellers will be selected for scanning by profiling techniques..."

Anyone else find that sentence at all chilling?

So this is where we've got to. We should not be surprised. At the same time our Home Secretary is saying he'll merrily disregard the European Court of Human Rights ruling that Section 44 is illegal in the UK, having these scanners installed was always going to go ahead without the need for undue consultation or hesitation. You don't build a surveillance nation by waiting for everyone to agree to it.

FFS, when exactly is the next General Election? It honestly cannot come a day too soon. It's like this bunch of criminals are trying to inflict as much damage on our civil freedoms as they can before the day finally comes they get booted out of office.

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Re: Inevitable and unstoppable

Don't worry too much about the election, it won't make blind bit of difference on two counts:

1. There really isn't any difference between NuLabour and BluLabour. After all, Cameron is the "heir to Blair", and the rot really got underway on Blair's shift.

2. Our government is no longer in Westminster, but in Brussels where they merely pull the strings of the pseuds in Westmonster. Since they signed the Lisbon Constitution Treaty, our Prime Minister has been required by EU law to do what is he told by Brussels. The only question that he is permitted to ask when our national government in Brussels has said "Jump!" is "How high, sir?"

As for your question, YES. "Selected for special treatment" springs to mind.

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Anonymous Coward

Before people vote like Britards...

Is there some kind of campaign where all the objections to the privacy/rights-eroding work of the New Labour years is formulated in such a way - a kind of manifesto, if you like - that any political party or candidate with a shred of decency and honesty (yes, a rare thing in politics) can commit to publicly? If not, is it not time that one was fired up?

People shouldn't be tempted to "vote Conservative because they're the opposite of Labour, innit?" What we really need is a way of formulating what the true opposition really is so that we can all go out and vote for it.

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Megaphone

The Freedom Bill

Do you mean like the Liberal Democrats' Freedom Bill?

http://freedom.libdems.org.uk/

You don't have to be Lib Dem to support the Freedom Bill.

And in light of the Conservatives' claims to have nothing more than a cigarette paper between themselves and the Lib Dems when it comes to civil liberties, it's also an opportunity to put pressure on Tory candidates to add their support to the Freedom Bill.

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FAIL

Daily Fail scaremongering

I was scanned by a millimetre wave thingy in Schiphol last week, and was shown the image it had captured of me.

There was nothing showing that could be interpreted as inappropriate in any way (I'm ready for witty replies there!) so I can only assume the Daily Mail are up to their usual tricks.

The most upsetting thing about the image was the ghostly image of my hair, which made me look like a cyberman on the scan!

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Boffin

Test mode?

But i thought that these machines didn't "store" the image, so how were you able to see it??

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There is more than one brand of scanning machinee

And the scanning machines can be calibrated in different ways.

Your experience shows the they *can* be set up to be relatively unobtrusive, not that they will be in practice. (Different news shows have different footage, showing very different images)

In practice some will probably be set up this way, others set up for the interests of pervy scanners. There won't be any oversight, you won't be shown what the scanner is doing, and if you make a fuss they will do all they can to make you trip an unpleasant as possible

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Goodness!

Either a lot of people like making bombs to pass the time or they have a good reason to express so forcibly their view of UK foreign policy.

I wonder which it is.

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Big Brother

Surveillance is doubleplus good

Yes, citizen. I am glad you see the good from your govenment. Remember that in the future we will be able to make you to brush your teeth, make you do your moning exersize and get you up in time to go to work,

You have nothing to worry about. Only the enemies of the state will have to worry.

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Stop

Ion detector

Hi,

Aren't Ion detectors far more efficient and without intrusion/imaging issue.... just detecting any ridiculous trace of explosive and/or narcotic.

I suspect they are far far more expensive, especially taking into account the quantity required as they can hardly process more than 2 or 3 passenger/minute.... That would make a huge array to deploy at Heathrow...

Now let's be realistic, isn't the first goal of terrorism to make people live in fear and the associated reduction in freedom? Sounds to me like they managed it quite well (to the pleasure of some political and industrial).

How many dead by terrorism in western nation each year? How many killed by alcohol? Might be worth spending that money on education and development, here and abroad, tackling the root causes.

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Anonymous Coward

ceremonial opening

And Gordon Brown, or perhaps a minor royal is going to be the first one through at the opening ceremony, while the press cameras click?

or are they going to always be VIPed through another channel (despite, historically and worldwide, the number of royals involved in death plots -- see hamlet or macbeth for some fictionalised accounts)

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Coat

Good!

Looks like UK taxpayers will finance the ECHR for the next century or so....

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Can you refuse

Does anyone know* whether you are allowed to refuse to be scanned, and submit to a pat-down search instead? I have nothing to hide, but I don't particularly want my bits on display even to an operator in a remote location who isn't capable of putting them on a website. I just don't want them looking. I don't mind the pat-down if they think it will help.

*As in, does anyone actually KNOW, as opposed to simply guessing about what they think ought to be the case.

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Will "all" passengers be scanned?

Will all passengers be scanned by these machines (which have proven to be ineffective- if you haven't seen/read any of the previous reports, at least look at the recent German TV interview where the scanner picked up the persons microphone and pen: but missed all the chemicals etc), or will first-class passengers and VIPs such as MPs/Celebs mysteriously have a "free pass" past them?

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AC@16:58, Cost versus benefit..

AC@16:58

Worst case 141 days. Likely (May 6th) or 106 days max.

How much will *one* of these cost.

Lots.

How many terrorists will it catch?

Almost none

Cost per machine. *very* large.

Handy hint. What do El Al use?

Are these things on sale or leaseback. If' ther're not this will cost an arm and a leg off UK Taxpayers.

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@Inevitable and unstoppable

Weren't the bombs in London on the tube and a bus?

Wouldn't it make more sense then to install scanners at all tube stations and on all buses?

Since that will rather slow down loading of passengers so you will need to do some pre-selection. Perhaps a separate door at the back of the bus with a scanner for people with the appropriate skin colour?

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Grenade

I don't know what scares me most...

... the shower of malfeasance and incompetence that passes for gumment and opposition

... or Joe Public who is happy to sit back and let all this shit happen.

As it stands the election won't solve any of this. Different names, same shit, higher taxes.

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Flame

I would like to know if...

...the people who vote against the posts that accept the new machines and implore those who are against them to fuck off; have they ever flown? When you fly about 100 times a year, you would welcome anything that expedites your passage through the airport. privacy be buggered. All I want to do is get to the lounge and get pissed. Now go away.

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title

So you willingly sacrifice your freedom and privacy all to go get pissed sooner?

You must be one sad person...

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Anonymous Coward

Yup

Both as passenger and flight crew. Thank you for asking.

Incidentally, I despise inebriated pax in both capacities.

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Joke

Someone has to lower the tone...

For a start:

"Doubts have been raised over whether they would have detected Umar Farouk Abdul Mutallab's device concealed in his underwear"

Why? Was it that small?

And point B: I tried to put that quote in the title, and was told it was too long.

Obviously a problem he didn't have.

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Anonymous Coward

Risk in proportion...

The last time an aircraft was destroyed by terror in the UK was the Lockerbie incident in 1988 (and even then, the incident originated in Frankfurt). 270 innocent people died, tragically.

Yet today in the UK, around 300 people have tragically died from smoking related causes. The same yesterday too. And the day before. And before that too. And again before that.

After passing through security checks at Heathrow, you will be offered bulk packs of cigarettes in duty free.

Yet you're 20,000 times more likely to die as a consequence of cigarettes than you are from terrorism.

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