Förderverein Informationstechnik und Gesellschaft

FC: FAA's new air passenger surveillance system

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Date:          Tue, 20 Apr 1999 09:05:16 -0400
From:          Declan McCullagh <>
Subject:       FC: FAA's new air passenger surveillance system

                     Tourist or Terrorist?
                     by Declan McCullagh (

                     3:00 a.m.  20.Apr.99.PDT
                     WASHINGTON -- A US$2.8-billion monitoring system
                     championed by Vice President Gore will use
                     computer profiles to single out airline
                     passengers for investigation and scrutiny.

                     Airlines will use a secret algorithm to
                     compare travelers' personal data to
                     profiles of likely terrorists, according to a new
                     proposed federal regulation. Other travelers will
                     be chosen at random. 

                     Critics complain the plan shows that Gore
                     doesn't really support privacy. Last May,
                     the vice president told an audience of
                     graduating students at New York
                     University that privacy "is a basic
                     American value." 

                     "He's been talking about privacy and the
                     protection of personal information online,
                     but those principles that he talks about
                     don't parallel what he's done. He's tried
                     to force intrusive measures into law,"
                     says Lisa Dean, vice president of the Free
                     Congress Foundation. "We'd have even
                     more of this with a President Gore." 

                     The vice president chaired a high-level
                     White House commission that in 1997
                     released recommendations that the
                     Federal Aviation Administration compiled
                     into a 40-page rule published Monday. 

                     [...remainder snipped...]

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