Devices that critics liken to cattle grids have biometric capabilities
Paul Joseph Watson
December 6, 2013
A new Transportation Security Administration directive that mandates airports provide security for terminal exits is likely to lead to the installation of more ‘detention pods’ which have the capability of subjecting travelers to biometric scans.
“Airports across the country have sued to block a new Transportation Security Administration directive that requires them, starting Jan. 1, to begin guarding exit security doors, as passengers leave flights and head for baggage claims,” reports the Associated Press.
The article notes that in order to comply with the regulation and save hundreds of thousands of dollars a year in staffing, airports may follow the example set by Atlantic City International, which has “installed five cylinder-shaped glass exit portals since 2009.”
These ‘detention pods’, which temporarily hold a traveler inside the portal until a green light and a voice command signals that the person can leave, have been compared to cattle grids by critics who see them as another way in which travelers are treated as prisoners inside the airport. According to Karen De Coster, the pods are a way “to remind you that you are a captive” and are “meant to make you feel like a prisoner who cannot leave.”
The detention pods, which are also in place at Syracuse International Airport, “were designed and approved by TSA,” according to Syracuse Airport Commissioner Christina Callahan.
Travelers have expressed confusion at the necessity of the pods. “I don’t understand those doors,” Cindy Katz, of Jupiter, Fla. told the Boston Globe. “What are they supposed to do? It slows everyone down.” The article also notes how some are concerned about “being scanned somehow while closed inside.”
Mindy Carpenter, who was waiting for friends to arrive at the airport complained, “It just took so long for the four of them to come through.”
The report adds that the detention pods “could be the wave of things to come,” and that their manufacturer, Eagle Security Group, is currently in talks with other airports.
As we previously highlighted, although the devices currently in use do not (at least publicly) utilize any kind of scanning technology, the pods do have biometric and object-detecting capabilities, meaning in the future Americans could face yet another stifling level of security simply to leave the airport.
A video demonstration of the devices shows a user biometrically scanning his fingerprint before he is allowed to leave the containment area.
“The identity of the user is guaranteed via fingerprint, iris or facial recognition scans before they are allowed to complete their passage from non-secure to secure areas. The Eagle ACP (Access Control Portal) with integrated biometrics of your choice is a complete solution,” states the company’s website.