New York City: Police device aims to take guesswork Out of detecting guns
In a speech on Tuesday morning to the New York City Police Foundation, Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly said the department was working with the Defense Department to develop gun scan technology "capable of detecting concealed firearms." The tool would operate as a sort of reverse infrared mapping tool by reading the energy people emit and pinpointing where that flow is blocked by some object, like a gun.
how is it dis information? they are looking to get what looks like thermal vision to the guy on the street. they are trying to avoid random (illegal)searches that people dont like(as they shouldnt) 6 of one,half dozen of another civil liberty lost
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Full-Body Scan Technology Deployed In Street-Roving Vans
Documents Reveal TSA Research Proposal To Body-Scan Pedestrians, Train Passengers Andy Greenberg
TSA Never Tested Full-Body Scans For Mass Transit, Except When It Did Andy Greenberg
As the privacy controversy around full-body security scans begins to simmer, it’s worth noting that courthouses and airport security checkpoints aren’t the only places where backscatter x-ray vision is being deployed. The same technology, capable of seeing through clothes and walls, has also been rolling out on U.S. streets.
American Science & Engineering, a company based in Billerica, Massachusetts, has sold U.S. and foreign government agencies more than 500 backscatter x-ray scanners mounted in vans that can be driven past neighboring vehicles to see their contents, Joe Reiss, a vice president of marketing at the company told me in an interview. While the biggest buyer of AS&E’s machines over the last seven years has been the Department of Defense operations in Afghanistan and Iraq, Reiss says law enforcement agencies have also deployed the vans to search for vehicle-based bombs in the U.S.
“This product is now the largest selling cargo and vehicle inspection system ever,” says Reiss.
The Z Backscatter Vans, or ZBVs, as the company calls them, bounce a narrow stream of x-rays off and through nearby objects, and read which ones come back. Absorbed rays indicate dense material such as steel. Scattered rays indicate less-dense objects that can include explosives, drugs, or human bodies. That capability makes them powerful tools for security, law enforcement, and border control.
It would also seem to make the vans mobile versions of the same scanning technique that’s riled privacy advocates as it’s been deployed in airports around the country. The Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) is currently suing the DHS to stop airport deployments of the backscatter scanners, which can reveal detailed images of human bodies. (Just how much detail became clear last May, when TSA employee Rolando Negrin was charged with assaulting a coworker who made jokes about the size of Negrin’s genitalia after Negrin received a full-body scan.)
“It’s no surprise that governments and vendors are very enthusiastic about [the vans],” says Marc Rotenberg, executive director of EPIC. “But from a privacy perspective, it’s one of the most intrusive technologies conceivable.”
AS&E’s Reiss counters privacy critics by pointing out that the ZBV scans don’t capture nearly as much detail of human bodies as their airport counterparts. The company’s marketing materials say that its “primary purpose is to image vehicles and their contents,” and that “the system cannot be used to identify an individual, or the race, sex or age of the person.”
Though Reiss admits that the systems “to a large degree will penetrate clothing,” he points to the lack of features in images of humans like the one shown at right, far less detail than is obtained from the airport scans. “From a privacy standpoint, I’m hard-pressed to see what the concern or objection could be,” he says.
But EPIC’s Rotenberg says that the scans, like those in the airport, potentially violate the fourth amendment. “Without a warrant, the government doesn’t have a right to peer beneath your clothes without probable cause,” he says. Even airport scans are typically used only as a secondary security measure, he points out. “If the scans can only be used in exceptional cases in airports, the idea that they can be used routinely on city streets is a very hard argument to make.”
The TSA’s official policy dictates that full-body scans must be viewed in a separate room from any guards dealing directly with subjects of the scans, and that the scanners won’t save any images. Just what sort of safeguards might be in place for AS&E’s scanning vans isn’t clear, given that the company won’t reveal just which law enforcement agencies, organizations within the DHS, or foreign governments have purchased the equipment. Reiss says AS&E has customers on “all continents except Antarctica.”
Reiss adds that the vans do have the capability of storing images. “Sometimes customers need to save images for evidentiary reasons,” he says. “We do what our customers need.”
And SJ nails the x-ring, also.
Based on the fact that you have worked in that industry, could you post a link or two?
Studies, research etc.
I've run across several that sound well intended and convincing but without the background knowledge, I've taken them w/ a grain of salt.
It appears tha many are willing to trade our future for a paycheck.
Here's some info w/ links. [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]
New Documents Prove TSA “Mischaracterized” Safety Aspects Of Full Body Scanners
June 27, 2011
Newly released internal government documents, obtained via the Freedom Of Information Act, reveal that the TSA, and specifically the head of the Department of Homeland Security, “publicly mischaracterized” the findings of the National Institute of Standards and Technology, in stating that NIST had positively confirmed the safety of full body scanners in tests.
In the private email response, NIST stated that the Institute had not, in fact, tested full body scanners at all for safety, and that the Institute does not even undertake product testing.
The email (below) states that the director of NIST was “not looking for corrections”, but wished to “offer clarification”, that the agency “doesn’t want any mischaracterization of their work continued.”
At the time, Prisonplanet.com published a response article to Napolitano’s claims, highlighting the fact that her statements regarding the safety of the scanners, as well as her claims that the pat down alternative was “discreet”, were manifestly false.
It is now clear that our concerns were shared by another government agency, in the form of NIST.
Another document obtained by EPIC even shows that, far from affirming their safety, NIST warned that airport screeners should avoid standing next to full body scanners in order to keep exposure to harmful radiation “as low as reasonably achievable.”
It is not clear whether or not the information and advice was ever passed on to TSA workers.
However, another document obtained by EPIC shows that a growing number of TSA workers diagnosed with cancers are voicing concern that the full body scanners and x-ray machines are indeed to blame for their illnesses.
The document also highlights the fact that the TSA has failed to issue employees with dosimeters, safety devices that would warn of radiation exposure, despite repeated requests from workers and their supervisors.
In an email sent by a TSA representative to employees at Boston’s Logan Airport, workers are assured that their complaints are being listened to and that a request to issue the radiation monitoring devices had been sent to TSA headquarters.
“I understand that some TSO’s who were diagnosed as having cancer have already left TSA employment but that BOS still has an alarmingly high number of cancer afflicted TSOs still working here.” the email states.
“Despite TSA management’s past assurances, many TSOs here do not feel safe from radiation threats that may go hand in hand with using x-ray screening technology, especially the newer [installed since TSA federalized airport security] technology…” the email continues.
In the same USA Today piece, Napolitano, or ‘Big Sis’ as she is now often referred to, also claimed that the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory had also independently affirmed the safety of the scanners.
However, yet another document obtained and released by EPIC now shows that a Johns Hopkins study actually revealed that radiation zones around body scanners could exceed the “General Public Dose Limit.”
At the time we pointed out that Dr Michael Love, who runs an X-ray lab at the department of biophysics and biophysical chemistry at the Johns Hopkins school of medicine had publicly stated two days previously that “statistically someone is going to get skin cancer from these X-rays”.
“…we have a situation at the airports where people are so eager to fly that they will risk their lives in this manner,” Love said.
In addition, several other scientists have continued to speak out over the health hazards associated with the x-ray technology, noting that the body scanners are far from safe.
It is now even more clear that Napolitano’s statements to the public regarding the body scanners were misleading at best, and at worst were outright lies.
EPIC is currently engaged in a lawsuit against the DHS to force full disclosure of body scanner radiation risks. A second EPIC lawsuit is seeking to suspend the use of full body scanners altogether. Both lawsuits are ongoing.
The TSA previously refused to release internal reports on the safety of the body scanners.
Steve Watson is the London based writer and editor for Alex Jones’ Infowars.net, and Prisonplanet.com. He has a Masters Degree in International Relations from the School of Politics at The University of Nottingham in England.