‘Disturbing’: TSA Fails Around 80% of Undercover Tests – Report

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A report revealing vulnerabilities at Transportation Security Administration (TSA) airport checkpoints has disturbed lawmakers, who for the first time received a classified briefing from the new TSA chief.

TSA Administrator David Pekoske and members of the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Office of Inspector General (OIG) appeared before the House Committee on Homeland Security Wednesday to discuss efforts to keep US transportation systems secure.

Before the public hearing, lawmakers received a classified briefing from Pekoske and DHS Inspector General John Roth, who presented the results of covert testing at airport security checkpoints.

Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas), who serves as chairman of the committee, did not go into detail about the classified meeting, but said all the lawmakers who attended found the findings “disturbing.”

Inspectors reportedly found TSA screeners, equipment or procedures failed at a rate “in the ballpark” of 80 percent, sources familiar with the classified report told ABC News.

In September, DHS released a statement that confirmed their inspectors “identified vulnerabilities with TSA’s screener performance, screening equipment, and associated procedures.”

The statement adds the DHS made eight recommendations to the TSA to improve the effectiveness of their screening checkpoints.

In response, the TSA said that it “concurs” with the DHS OIG findings and is committed to aggressively implementing the recommendations as it continues to raise the baseline for aviation security at airports throughout the country.

“We take the OIG’s findings very seriously and are implementing measures that will improve screening effectiveness at checkpoints,” Pekoske said in a statement“We are focused on staying ahead of a dynamic threat to aviation with continued investment in the workforce, enhanced procedures, and new technologies.”

The report comes two years after the DHS conducted their last covert tests of the TSA and found the federal agents tasked with keeping US airports safe failed to stop prohibited items from passing through security 95 percent of the time.

Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Alabama) said Pekoske will have a “real challenge” trying to get the department up to date.

“This agency that you run is broken, badly, and it needs your attention,” Rogers said.

Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-Mississippi) also suggested that the TSA should look to other countries that use computed tomography (CT) scanners at every checkpoint.

Pekoske said the technology is already being used in the US to check bags, but agreed that the technology would be “probably the most significant improvement” to scan people at checkpoints.

There are currently two airports in Boston and Phoenix that are testing the technology. However, Pekoske told the committee that investing in the technology across the US would require “funding above what TSA currently has.”

Thompson blamed President Donald Trump’s administration for diverting funds from the TSA in order to build a wall along the US-Mexico border.

“The Trump administration must invest innovation security to strengthen TSA effectiveness,” Thompson said. “Instead the administration appears hell-bent on squandering billions on a boondoggle border wall that would do nothing to make the nation more secure.”

On Wednesday, the TSA reportedly asked travelers at Denver International Airport to remove all electronic devices larger than a smartphone from their bags and place them in a bin for enhanced screening, according to the Denver Post.

The TSA announced the measures in July, saying they plan to implement the extra screening across all airports soon.

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  • elbustaroyjetspeekerson

    Yeah but…..WE are still at a 100% failure rate in getting this useless, traitorous money-hoover SHITCANNED, PERMANENTLY.

  • YeahRightOkay

    …I beg to differ…tsa is 100% successful on a daily basis…taking away the 4th, 5th, and 6th Amendment rights of every US Citizen…however that is only for the idiots who are herded through their devices…

    • NonYo Business

      exactly. all these statistics say is that they didnt molest enough children or properly grope Americans. Humans are so friggen stupid. So stupid they accept this utterly disgusting treatment of themselves.

  • Phil_Ossifer

    The TSA is a massive public relations bureaucracy designed to make it look like the government is actually doing something while it ignores the real problem which is radical Islam and its followers. TSA = Totally Superfluous Agency.

    • NonYo Business

      Flouride has made so many things possible.

  • Mayday911us

    Well can we blame the department of homeland security because they oversee that government agency.

  • Simon says

    worthless agency…strictly for conditioning of police state…just flew…forgot my pocket knife in briefcase…got pulled out from line for check…not for knife which was never found but for Swedish Fish gummy’s…worthless waste of time and resources

  • juskom95

    So . . . . what’s new? The TSA has had this atrocious rating pretty much continuously.

    It is security theater at best.

  • Cynical Old Bastard

    What disturbs me the most is that most people pass right by the disturbing things in this article–the first of which is the use of the word “DISTURBING” in the headline. Basically this sets the tone of all the reactions–and opinions–of those who actually take the time to read it. Most don’t. Most can’t. Most can’t because anything longer than a text message loses their attention.

    But wait! There’s more!

    “TSA Administrator David Pekoske and members of the Department of
    Homeland Security’s (DHS) Office of Inspector General (OIG) appeared
    before the House Committee on Homeland Security Wednesday to discuss efforts to keep US transportation systems secure.”

    Translation: We need more money.

    “Before the public hearing, lawmakers received a classified briefing from Pekoske and DHS Inspector General John Roth, who presented the results of covert testing at airport security checkpoints.”

    Translation: We secretly tested and then classified the results of the test so that the public cannot see the results–resulting in the fact that we need more money.

    But wait… there’s more!

    Both Republicans and Democrats agree that more money is needed so as to implement more security.

    Translation: Papers please.

    But wait!

    “Thompson blamed President Donald Trump’s administration for diverting
    funds from the TSA in order to build a wall along the US-Mexico border.”

    Translation: It’s Trump’s fault we didn’t get more money… and dammit! We need more money!

    “The Trump administration must invest innovation security to strengthen TSA effectiveness,” Thompson said. “Instead
    the administration appears hell-bent on squandering billions on a
    boondoggle border wall that would do nothing to make the nation more
    secure.”

    Translation: We want some of those billions so we can hire more zombies to stand around and do nothing. Plus, we want our cut of the loot, dammit!

    “On Wednesday, the TSA reportedly asked travelers at Denver International Airport to remove all electronic devices larger than a smartphone from their bags and place them in a bin for enhanced screening, according to the Denver Post.”

    Translation: We want loot! We want loot! We want loot!

    People, please wake up. I know a few of you are, but we need more. You are being robbed blind and do nothing more than bitch and moan on these entertainment websites. If you have not already stood up to your local government then your whiny-assed complaints are nothing more than empty words.

  • SP_88

    Last time it was a 95% failure rate. Now it’s “somewhere in the ballpark of” 80%.
    That equals a 15% drop in how much freedom to travel we have. Wait until the biometric security system is going in full. That should be fun. Hint: bring your own Vaseline.