Here’s something for all of our paranoid readers out there: The Department of Homeland Security may have signed contracts to develop systems that will be able to provide detailed body scans without the subject even being aware of it.
Documents obtained by the Electronic Privacy Information Center under a Freedom of Information Act request appear to show that the DHS has signed multiple contracts worth millions of dollars over recent years with the apparent aim of creating new technologies that’ll help law enforcement agencies locate bombs or other explosives concealed on a person. Such technologies include step-through X-Ray machines that could be placed in doorways and corridors without being visible, a mobile unit that uses multiple cameras mounted within the same vehicle, and a long-range scanner that could potentially detective metallic or high-density plastic from up to 10 meters away.
According to the assistant director of EPIC’s open government program, Ginger McCall, it’s unclear whether any of these projects have actually been completed, but that doesn’t mitigate the numerous concerns about their potential existence, including whether they would violate Fourth Amendment prohibitations against unreasonable search and whether or not there would be reason to worry about exposure to radiation. The DHS hasn’t responded to requests for comment, but Big Brother was said to be very excited about the way the future is turning out.
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