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Security Checkpoints Predict What You Will Do

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the goes-the-theory dept.

Privacy 369

An anonymous reader writes "New security check points in 2020 will look just like something out of the futuristic movie, The Minority Report. The idea of the new checkpoints will allow high traffic to pass through just as you were walking at a normal pace. No more waving a wand to get through checkpoints — the new checkpoint can detect if you have plans to set off a bomb before you even enter the building."

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369 comments

And with a 100% conviction rate (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26291949)

Trials will be deemed unnecessary in 2025.

Re:And with a 100% conviction rate (5, Insightful)

MrNaz (730548) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292107)

According to the last group in the White House, trials became unnecessary on Sept 11, 2001.

hhhmm. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26291953)

Yeah right.

finally! (5, Funny)

InsertWittyNameHere (1438813) | more than 5 years ago | (#26291957)

finally! we'll know what women want!

Re:finally! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292321)

sex and then get married to the guy she slept with?
Good old oxytocin...

Re:finally! (2, Funny)

Daimanta (1140543) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292523)

Diamonds and shoes.

The rest is of lesser importance.

Disclaimer: This post has an error margin of 22%

Re:finally! (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292593)

They want to have a lot of attention. If that means sleeping with you to get it, they do that. If you're willing to give them the attention they want without them having to sleep with you, they're all about that, too. That's why the friendzone sucks.

Skin temp = stress? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26291959)

Or just a raging hangover?

Bullshit (4, Insightful)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 5 years ago | (#26291969)

> No more waving a wand to get through checkpoints -- the new checkpoint can detect if you
> have plans to set off a bomb before you even enter the building.

In other words, anyone who looks Islamic will be stopped and searched as will a few others chosen at random.

Re:Bullshit (1)

Rude Turnip (49495) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292259)

Islamic people come in different colors. My cousin is married to a Muslim who's pasty eastern European. One of my friends from high school as a black Muslim and another was an Afghan Muslim (not sure if that's arabic or not).

Re:Bullshit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292411)

That's precisely the kind of point that will be (and, in fact, already is) lost on TSA screeners, cops and the like.

Re:Bullshit (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292379)

So it's business as usual I guess?

Re:Bullshit (-1, Troll)

phoenix321 (734987) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292393)

Seriously - what goals do airport security checkpoins have?

Screen passengers and their baggage for protection against any threats against the aircraft from the inside, that is passenger and cargo compartments - and be effective, efficient, speedy and cheap, in that order.

99 percent of any and all past and present attacks against airline travel perpetrated - through passengers or baggage! - were committed by people who a) claimed they were doing it for Islam and b) who have declared as being of Muslim faith.

All "airline terrorists" - against which airport security can provide any protection - are a proper subset of "People is Muslim faith".

Therefore, it is not only logical to exclude non-Muslims from security checks but beneficial, as it wastes less resources and security staff to search improbable suspects.

Because the result of this logical reasoning is entirely un-PC and doubleplusungood, I could've very well just said "show me one non-Muslim passenger with a bomb and then we'll talk". But that wouldn't have made so much fun doing it, I admit. But I'm preaching to the choir here, as all un-PC-thinking people already know this and all strictly PC people have stopped reading in the second sentence and will never take any logic into account anyway.

Now if you had argued that it's impossible to IDENTIFY passengers of Muslim faith, well that's the reason we're searching everyone equally right now. Oh, and we're not trying to hurt Muslims feelings, of course.

Re:Bullshit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292601)

Just force anyone who wants to fly to watch a short gay porn clip. Slightly inconvenient to most of us who are straight and a pain in the ass to the fundies (of no particular religion). Sounds like a plan to me.

Re:Bullshit (1)

darkpixel2k (623900) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292441)

In other words, anyone who looks Islamic will be stopped and searched as will a few others chosen at random.

I know no one reads TFA, but doesn't it bother anyone that the screenshot is Windows XP?

How long before the system can detect people who don't pass the Windows Genuine Advantage test, or it detects an image of a penguin or a logo from any one of the numerous Linux distributions--and then flags you as "terrorist, shoot on sight"?

Stopping muslims is a good thing (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292565)

As if that's a bad thing.

Let's see now... just who sets off bombs on aircraft, takes hostages, hijacks, etc. What primary distinguishing characteristic can we find to help predict who will do that? Eye color? Favourite sports team? /sarcasm

For those who slept through Modern History class, I'll tell: religion. Specifically Muslims.
They are the most likely group to set off a bomb on an airplane or hijack it. We can pretend that's not the case (and continue with the current "security theatre" at airports) in order to protect the delicate sensibilities of the PC crowd, but that doesn't change facts.

And for those peaceful muslims who are offended at what I've just said, perhaps you should be more troubled by the actions of your fellow muslims and do more to reform your religion.

>>...anyone who looks Islamic will be stopped...

Re:Bullshit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292641)

As it should be; sorry but it isn't racial profiling when the majority of terrorist are of a certain group.

Retarded (5, Interesting)

drsmall17 (1240792) | more than 5 years ago | (#26291971)

This is retarded. Suppose I have to go to the bathroom and look nervous like I won't make it time? I'll probably set off the scanner as a suspected terrorist.

Re:Retarded (1)

xOneca (1271886) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292003)

Then they'll keep you more time...

Re:Retarded (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292093)

And I would venture that 78% is based on hits out of total targets... meaning they're running 22% false negative, not 22% false positive. From a security standpoint, that's a lot worse.

Re:Retarded (2, Funny)

ccguy (1116865) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292119)

You can always count on some other slashdotter trying to trick the system and settings off alarms.

Since I have to be at the airport 2 hours before take off, at least I'll now something to do.

Re:Retarded (1)

qbast (1265706) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292431)

Just hope it won't be the last thing you will ever do. Or at least last thing before being shipped to whatever hellhole replaces Guantanamo.

Re:Retarded (1)

fahrbot-bot (874524) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292657)

Yes, yes. TSA agents are so known for their sense of humor.
Enjoy your encore in the backroom and the trip to Gitmo.

Re:Retarded (5, Funny)

Rude Turnip (49495) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292209)

When I was flying back home after visiting a client, I ran towards the men's room at the Cleveland airport and set off an explosion.

Re:Retarded (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292289)

Suppose I have to go to the bathroom and look nervous like I won't make it time? I'll probably set off the scanner as a suspected terrorist.

I'm afraid so. Wanting to get to a smoking area for a long overdue cigarette would be another good example (from my last encounter with DHS on entry to the US).

Re:Retarded (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292331)

This is retarded. Suppose I have to go to the bathroom and look nervous like I won't make it time?

Ideally, a robotic porta-potty would be dispatched post haste to relieve your discomfort. A C3-pee-oh or a C3-poo-oh, depending upon your need.

Spare me the hyperbole (1)

JonTurner (178845) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292509)

Then you'll be questioned and/or searched, deemed to not be a threat and sent on your way. And I suppose you'll learn to go wee before the flight.

>>Suppose I have to go to the bathroom and look nervous like I won't make it time?

False-Positive Rate? (4, Interesting)

FranklinWebber (1307427) | more than 5 years ago | (#26291973)

FTA: "We are running at about 78% accuracy on mal-intent detection..."

And that's supposed to be good? What fraction of the remaining 22% can we expect to be false positives?

[begin sarcasm]
I look forward to a future in which the police stop me more than they already do.
[end sarcasm]

Re:False-Positive Rate? (3, Insightful)

wjh31 (1372867) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292245)

i would assume accuracy of mal intent detection only refers to false negatives and true positives (so 22% would be the fraction of false negatives, rather than false positives), it says nothing of the false positives (or true negatives, but they are not of much interest) which could be anything if no numbers are otherwise provided

Love the accuracy (4, Insightful)

Xelios (822510) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292009)

78% accurate in a controlled setting is nothing to be proud of. I'll grant the fact that they're still in the early research stages, as they say, but I'd need to see an accuracy rate of over 99% in a real world application for me to consider it a valid option. Otherwise there will be far too many false positives for it to be useful in a high-traffic situation.

I'll leave it to other people to point out everything else wrong with this kind of system.

Re:Love the accuracy (2, Insightful)

slim (1652) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292031)

False positives aren't too bad. You just fall back on the old method.

False negatives would be a bigger problem.

Re:Love the accuracy (1)

arotenbe (1203922) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292215)

False positives aren't too bad. You just fall back on the old method.

Yes, but would they?

</cynicism>

Re:Love the accuracy (3, Insightful)

Koiu Lpoi (632570) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292217)

I remember one of the founding fathers saying something about innocent and guilty men and which should go free. But that was probably just a dream; catching all the criminals to save the children is what matters!

Re:Love the accuracy (2, Insightful)

blueg3 (192743) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292239)

Not at all, depending on your false positive rate and the predictability of the false negatives. If false negatives are random and you don't let people who are marked as "dangerous" leave and try again, you don't need your false negative rate to be that low -- it still presents a very significant problem to a potential attacker.

False positives, on the other hand, are a big problem. The enormous majority of people are negatives, so with any appreciably large false positive rate, nearly all positives will be false. You then need a secondary system to separate real positives from false -- otherwise all you're doing is marking lots of random people as dangerous.

Granted, all they cite is their "accuracy", which is ambiguous -- it's neither a false positive nor false negative rate.

Re:Love the accuracy (3, Insightful)

mbone (558574) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292355)

False positives also affect secondary screening - if you have too many of them, it's hard to get people to take them seriously, and they are likely to miss true positives.

Re:Love the accuracy (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292255)

That's not necessarily true.

False positives will breed false negatives if the second layer screening can't keep up. Plus, the more false positives you get, the less vigilant your second layer screeners will become. And the rarer the 'hits', the worse the situation becomes.

Given the high-volume nature of airports, no automated system will ever realistically reach the level of accuracy you would want. You either have a torrent of false positives so thick you might as well have the current system or the threshold is set low enough that a hypothetical hit has a better than even chance of going undetected. In a statistical context, the only solution to this kind of problem is meta-analysis, which is kind of difficult to perform in an airport context.

Re:Love the accuracy (4, Insightful)

girlintraining (1395911) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292549)

Let's say you have a system that has a 99.9% accuracy rate. What that means is, 99.9% of the time, it catches the terrorist if s/he goes across your magic line. And let's say you have 1 terrorist per million. What this means is that for every million people that cross the line, 1,000 people will be pulled aside for interrogation. Your 99.9% accurate profiling system is 99.9% inaccurate when it comes to discriminating the terrorist from the 9,999 look-alikes.

Oops.

Re:Love the accuracy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292631)

but I'd need to see an accuracy rate of over 99% in a real world application for me to consider it a valid option.

At 99% accuracy and moderate traffic on a highway, you'd have to deal with terrorist vehicles being detected approximately once every 2 minutes at each checkpoint. How quickly can you cope with all those suspects?

(of course, at their stated current accuracy, you'll be getting a terrorist suspect every 4 seconds on every checkpoint, so goodluckwiththat)

I feel safer already (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292029)

So... nobody could ever be unaware they're carrying a "disruptive device" (is that like a crackberry?) through a checkpoint?

What we really need is a machine to identify ahead of time all those fucknozzles who are likely come up with or approve of futile ideas like these.

Re:I feel safer already (1)

MrNaz (730548) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292129)

What we really need is a machine to identify ahead of time all those fucknozzles who are likely come up with or approve of futile ideas like these.

There is already a mechanism to get rid of such people. It was called the Constitution. Pity you guys broke it by electing Bush twice.

As if I weren't different enough (4, Insightful)

holophrastic (221104) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292033)

So, when I walk into the airport, in December, at minus twenty, in shorts, nad my skin temperature is about ten degrees colder than the average, and my heart rate is about 20 points higher than the average, and I'm not sweating, and there's snow in my boot, I'm going to be intercepted every time -- for being different. Great.

But really, this time I read the article, and welcome to the same stupid problems for the same stupid solutions. The system is basically a remote polygraph. So you can walk at full speed while it assesses you. So we'll have longer corridors, but the exercise will be nice.

Of course the tests get to measure people's personal intents. Great. So anwser two questions. . .

      - do you think trained criminals can learn to pass polygraphs? C.E.O.'s don't seem to have much trouble. Frame of mind and all that.

      - so crime will once again shift back to the days of slipping something into someone else's bags. that someone else has no idea that they're carrying a bomb. The criminal may set off the system, but he's got no evidence on him anymore. So what exactly are you going to find? And which plane are you going to check? Even the criminal may not know which random passenger was marked.

This is why security never learns. Criminals have an arsenal of techniques from thousands of years of history. And those criminals get to pick what they want to use today. And those criminals have a darn good reward for picking the correct one. On the other hand, security personnel, and I include this system's designers, try to solve the current problem, and ofter forget the old problems. The criminals know exactly which systems are presently in place, as well as any routines being used by personnel.

So once again, we've managed to stop the dumb criminal with nothing to gain, and amused, or worse challenged, the intelligent criminal with lots to gain.

Re:As if I weren't different enough (1)

Tubal-Cain (1289912) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292233)

in December, at minus twenty, in shorts,

Finally! Someone who mirrors my shorts-in-every-season dress style.

Re:As if I weren't different enough (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292281)

We're called Minnesotans. Nice to meet you.

Re:As if I weren't different enough (4, Interesting)

holophrastic (221104) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292487)

REALLY? I'm not alone?!

I just don't understand. I live here. This is my native habitat. Why should I be any more uncomfortable during in expected weather conditions than any other animal?

So, let me ask you -- because I've never been able to ask anyone before: what's on your list of reasons? I routinely stop traffic within two minutes of shovelling the driveway. I've had couriers pull over and get out just to tell me that I'm crazy. And I've had A&W staff refuse to sell a burger to me because I must be clinically insane.

My more recent responses to "why are you wearing shorts" include:
      - I find it more convenient to raise my heart-rate than to carry extraneous clothing.
      - I prefer natural methods over artificial ones
      - I can't afford pants (while wearing $125 shorts)
      - "government project"
      - I'm originally from the arctic circle/yukon/canada (this one seems to satisfy just about everybody)
      - why is your wife so ugly? just a genetic trait I guess.
      - millions of years of evolution
      - I have a genetic mutation, my core is thermally regulated (I'm warm-blooded you lizard.)
      - I wouldn't stand so close when calling me crazy for fear that I actually am.
      - I'm better than you. It's not like I could be worse.
      - You can show off your legs, I can show off my legs. My calves are gorgeous. (works for women. substitute legs with clevage as appropriate)
      - The same way you enjoy being hot on a summer beach, I enjoy being cold in the winter snow -- with more oxygen, less polution, and no radiation.

Have any of your own that I might borrow?

Re:As if I weren't different enough (1)

karmatic (776420) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292615)

Finally! Someone who mirrors my shorts-in-every-season dress style.

So I'm not alone!

My legs don't really get cold. I've been perfectly comfortable with snow boots, a heavy coat, and shorts - I'm quite comfortable.

I don't know why it bothers people so much.

As if you were actually different (0, Flamebait)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292263)

So, when I walk into the airport, in December, at minus twenty, in shorts, nad my skin temperature is about ten degrees colder than the average, and my heart rate is about 20 points higher than the average, and I'm not sweating, and there's snow in my boot, I'm going to be intercepted every time -- for being different. Great.

Get over yourself. You aren't that different. You certainly aren't different enough from any other human to register with a system looking for subliminal actions and behaviors.

You think you are the ONLY ONE that dresses down for a trip from a cold place to a warm one? Once again - get over yourself.

do you think trained criminals can learn to pass polygraphs?

Possibly but these are not polygraphs we are talking about, but very subliminal actions you cannot block.

so crime will once again shift back to the days of slipping something into someone else's bags.

(a) You can't put a bomb into anyones bag that can drive a plane into a building.

(b) I dare you to even try approaching another persons bag in an airport. People are paranoid about their luggage, and if anything it would be far harder to do this than to get something through security today!

This is why security never learns. Criminals have an arsenal of techniques from thousands of years of history.

And this is why people like you never learn. Because throughout history, a policy of defense in depth has shown to be mostly effective while a policy of zero security has shown to end in disaster.

You like to throw water on this plan, fine - what is your plan? Strip search everyone? Perhaps arrest anyone dressing funny? Why is behavioral analysis not the preferred method of detecting potential problems when it's the least prone to unfair (and dangerous) profiling?

So once again, we've managed to stop the dumb criminal with nothing to gain

Considering that's 90% of them - sounds good to me.

Re:As if you were actually different (2, Insightful)

Ian Alexander (997430) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292485)

(a) You can't put a bomb into anyones bag that can drive a plane into a building.

(b) I dare you to even try approaching another persons bag in an airport. People are paranoid about their luggage, and if anything it would be far harder to do this than to get something through security today!

Who says a terrorist has to want to fly a plane into a building? I imagine you could spread terror pretty effectively if you started salting baggages with bombs...

Re:As if you were actually different (1)

TheLink (130905) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292591)

"Get over yourself. You aren't that different"

Uh but that's the big problem. If he was the only false positive then it works.

Lastly, it's pretty easy to put a bomb on a plane. I can think of plenty of ways.

For example: the plane doesn't have to a be a conventional airliner to cause big problems.

As for the other ways, go figure them out yourself if you're a terrorist.

false negative (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292035)

So, you get a bomb planted on someone without their knowledge.

Behavior isn't enough (1)

evanbd (210358) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292051)

You do have to actually check for the bomb or other weapon at some point.

All a terrorist group would have to do would be get the suicide bomber to not know whether or not the backpack contained a bomb *this* time, while knowing that it eventually would. The details of the attack are left to the reader...

Tin Foil Helmet (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292057)

Foiled Again

stupid idea (2, Insightful)

Dolphinzilla (199489) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292085)

Sounds pretty hokey to me... As a frequent air traveler, give me the old fashioned pat down search with full baggage inspection - in fact I felt safest after 9/11 when they did random searches at the gate too - I have seen more than one person lead away from a gate in handcuffs after a random gate search turned up illegal drugs or other such nonsense. So the fact that they made it through the gate in the first place points out the fallibility of the current process. IMHO we need MORE hands on security not less, more sniffers and x-ray machines - I can easily factor in a longer wait at the airport, the peace of mind is worth it to me...

Re:stupid idea (5, Insightful)

clarkkent09 (1104833) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292349)

The chances of being on a plane blown up by a terrorist are so minuscule that to willingly submit to a demeaning treatment and long waits in order to have "peace of mind" seems irrational.

As we saw in India terrorists can just as easily walk into a train station or a hotel and open fire on everyone in sight, so would you like every public place to install metal detectors and strip searches for even more peace of mind? Whatever you do there is some risk involved. I suggest you learn to live with it instead of supporting making everybody life gradually more and more miserable until perfect safety is achieved, which of course will never happen.

Re:stupid idea (1)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292469)

As we saw in India terrorists can just as easily walk into a train station or a hotel and open fire on everyone in sight

Sounds like the best argument I've ever heard for opposing gun control. Didn't the photographer who caught the only picture of the attackers say that he wished he had a gun instead of a camera?

Re:stupid idea (4, Insightful)

evanbd (210358) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292357)

in fact I felt safest[...]after a random gate search turned up illegal drugs

What does that have to do with your safety?

Re:stupid idea (4, Insightful)

mbone (558574) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292387)

I have seen more than one person lead away from a gate in handcuffs after a random gate search turned up illegal drugs or other such nonsense.

So, what, illegal search and seizure makes you feel safer ?

Re:stupid idea (0, Troll)

Dolphinzilla (199489) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292619)

It seems to me that the people that bitch the loudest about illegal search and seizure are people who desire to break the law if they wish and don't want to get caught - do you REALLY care if some TSA agent goes through your dirty underwear and socks, I find it satisfying, especially if its been a long trip and the cloths are really smelly...Hell, Ive thought about carrying a really huge dildo in my luggage just for the entertainment value

Re:stupid idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292629)

I don't care about illegal drugs. Lets look for actual threats. What has someone on drugs done but bother you? Let us concentrate on real threats.

Horse Shit (5, Insightful)

DynaSoar (714234) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292117)

The FAST system detects physiological signs of stress. In testing it detected "hostile intent" in volunteers. The obvious question is how can volunteers have valid hostile intent? You can't test deception with fake deception. The generalizability of physiological response to stressors is a basic tenet of physiological psychology (the folks who brought you FAST's grand dad, the polygraph).

The volunteers knew they were volunteers in a study and in no danger. In practice, this device will trigger on every person who is nervous about flying, because the physiological markers for stress are the same regardless of the reason. There will be many, many more of those than with 'hostile intent'. The test study was unable to have adequate control (real, naive persons) to prove its claim.

Most people can learn simple biofeedback techniques to control physiological reactions to some degree. Those with hostile intent don't need to get very good at it, they just need to be able to control it better than an untrained person with a fear of flying.

FAST isn't supposed to work. Its owners know it can't. It's just supposed to be believable enough to convince the public that it could catch bad guys to increase public confidence, and to convince the government that further funding is warranted.

Stick the designers in it and ask them if it can tell hostile intent from fear of flying (and base GAO investigation of the program upon the result, to make it more salient). They'll say yes. Either it'll trigger and show them to be lying, or it won't and so it doesn't work.

Re:Horse Shit (2, Interesting)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292403)

Stick the designers in it and ask them if it can tell hostile intent from fear of flying (and base GAO investigation of the program upon the result, to make it more salient). They'll say yes. Either it'll trigger and show them to be lying, or it won't and so it doesn't work.

That might end up being the most valid and useful test of all. I like it.

80% of deception "detected" (1)

mjtrac95570 (1174405) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292123)

In the article, a Homeland Security spokesmodel says "We are running at about 78% accuracy on mal-intent detection, and 80% on deception."

I'd be very curious to see their testing protocol. Is it like the War Department, which straps big bullseyes on simulated enemy missiles and then straps them to the backs of giant turtles, so that they can claim a great interception rate?

it does not detect intent (4, Insightful)

aepervius (535155) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292137)

Firstly, they don't say the false positive rate , they only say the true positive rate. By now many poster here will have picked that up. Even at 1% false positive , pass 10000 person thru the check point, 100 false positive, yada yada law of great number etc...

Secondly It only does detect external signs of nervousness at best and nothing else. Such sign of nervousness MIGHT be displayed by people with malevolent intent, but certainly not only by them. Consider where such detector might be implanted : courtroom, IRS, FBI buildings, airports before boarding. A lot of place where people WILL be more often than not nervous. And what will happens ? Terrorist or any other mal intended smart persons will get an additional training : 1) meditate to lower all sign of nervousness 2) take a nyquil or whatever calm you down.

Thirdly, as the various western governments seem to go toward more and more security of that type, TV camera, drone and whatnot, I have long stopped fearing terrorist (and I barely missed getting in a bomb blast in Paris metro by a few dozen minutes...). Nowadays I fear the police and the governement and their big-brotherisation more than not. I fear that the time for the third box (the munition one) will come way sooner than I ever expected in my dystopian nightmare.

Looking for Malcontents? (1)

gznork26 (1195943) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292143)

So they'll be able to set up covert checkpoints that people walk past without knowing they're being assessed, and they're looking for 'malcontents'? In other words, this is a system for picking out people who are not thrilled with whatever the current government (or junta) is doing, so they can be charged and locked up in those shiny new detention centers that Cheney's company Halliburton have built in the US. That's an easy way to cut down on the possibility of protests in general, and of 'undesirables' at any sort of public or private gathering. Private companies will want to install them in their facilities to monitor employees. This sort of thing has no redeeming social value.

---
I write pointed political short stories at klurgsheld.wordpress.com

Didn't they read God Emperor of Dune? (1)

savi (142689) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292145)

This will just cause the evolution of undetectable people who will then topple the Empire.

creators' newclear kode KNOWS what we'll do (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292165)

&, is very useful in helping us do the same (knowing what we're doing, & why).

Agreed, it seems pointless... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292169)

...as a replacement for existing security stations, at least, but if it was an extra layer of security then I suppose it might actually be somewhat useful.

I'd imagine this would prove somewhat useful after people have gone through security, perhaps when walking to their gate, the automated system can have one quick check to see if anyone's acting suspicious (really, that's all this is, an automated "suspect" detector, something veteran police already do anyway) so they can have one more quick pat down before they get on the plane. So what if it's only 70% accurate, if we assume that the security gates are 90% effective at not letting "terrorists" through, then that's going to potentially catch about 7% of the remaining 10% that do get through.

Still, I think it'd be better to just train a few people to keep an eye out via CCTV and whatnot. Probably a lot cheaper, too.

No gait analysis? (2, Funny)

Have Blue (616) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292175)

And here I was thinking we finally had a reason to properly fund the Ministry of Silly Walks.

.. on Thursday Januaray 01, @01:27PM (1)

highfreq2 (575192) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292179)

"Security Checkpoints Predict What You Will Do on Thursday January 01, @01:27PM"
Damn it's already passed. Oh well, "eating lunch" wouldn't have been a revelation.

Re:.. on Thursday Januaray 01, @01:27PM (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292277)

Not for you, you of course were there. But for the rest of us it was important information. ;)

right... (3, Insightful)

owlnation (858981) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292213)

So basically what this article is really saying is, that by 2020 the West's gradual transition to total fascism will be near completion.

Re:right... (1)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292501)

So basically what this article is really saying is, that by 2020 the West's gradual transition to total fascism will be near completion.

I have a better idea. Let's give up our "empire", withdraw from the World and adopt the Swiss stance of armed neutrality. Back it up with our nuclear deterrent.

Nobody is going to invade us -- nuclear weapons combined with a ridiculous amount of firearms should be a sufficient deterrent. Terrorists will lose their motivation for attacking us when we stop interfering in their countries. Let's see how long the despots in the Middle East can cling to power when they can't blame the United States for everything that's wrong in their countries.

Re:right... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292589)

I have a better idea. Let's give up our "empire", withdraw from the World and adopt the Swiss stance of armed neutrality. Back it up with our nuclear deterrent.

Right after we figure out how not to depend on any imports, sure.

In 2020... (1)

Kindaian (577374) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292223)

There will be robots around all over doing chores... and they are impervious to all checkpoints!

On the other hand, for mere humans, there will be makeup that makes the sensors moth...

my hope is the morally bankrupt governments (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292235)

will become financially bankrupt well before they choke their peoples rights even more. Happy New Year!

Gadget security (1)

HangingChad (677530) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292283)

Gadget security, no matter how good the gadget, is ever going to provide security. The false positives will be worse than Vista UAC and pretty soon people will start ignoring them or turning the sensitivity down to the point it's nearly useless.

Anything that's uses behavior can be fooled. Even lie detectors can be spoofed with training.

Once again Homeland Insecurity spending billions to provide the most sophisticated false sense of security money can buy.

how about solving the real problem instead? (1)

theblondebrunette (1315661) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292291)

How about working towards the reason someone would try to bomb a plane?
Or, make non-bombable planes.. Hammering at only one side of the problem doesn't lead to the best solutions.

Re:how about solving the real problem instead? (1)

Dallas Caley (1262692) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292609)

great idea, but easier said than done though

Sure i agree the U.S. (and the "western" world) has not been very nice in the past and we've given a lot of people reasons to bomb us, but even if we could all of a sudden start being really great people, you would still not be able to stop every single crazy person from wanting to bomb a plane.

And regarding a non-bombable plane, unfortunately i think a non-bombable plane would also be a non-flyable plane. And if i remember correct the terrorists on 9/11 didn't have any bombs (or at least thats what i've been told)

Minority Report? WTF? (1)

Kuroji (990107) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292315)

Is it me or do all the 'in 5-10 years' tech stories lately say that everything is going to look like Minority Report? Did this suddenly become the only sci-fi movie that might represent what things are going to look like a decade from now? Nevermind that it's probably going to look almost the same as it does these days unless Obama decides to tear down and rebuild every city in the nation.

Guess I won't be flying again with good reason (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292333)

Been there done that. I had my car stolen years ago. The police put me through hell getting it back so I was a little uneasy with police. About a week later I pulled up to a light and saw a cop facing me coming the other way. I looked away nervously because of what they had just put me through a week earlier. Well he turned around and followed me right up to where I was working. He tells me not to move handcuffs me and sticks me in the back of his car. It took me 20 minutes to get him to admit why he handcuffed me. Turns out the license plate was reported as stolen. When I bought the car it was missing the front license plate so when it was recovered they wrote it up as stolen without telling me. I explained it never had a front plate but he wasn't impressed. After another 10 minutes I convinced him to check the registration and sure enough it was registered to me. He never did get a call back I so asked if he could remove it from the stolen list when he finally let me go? He said no I'd have to replace the plates and there was nothing stopping me from being re-arrested on my way to the DMV. Just to spike the ball my employer saw me handcuffed and gave me a grilling about it. Needless to say I avoid the police, the cop was a real dick about it, and anytime I see one I stare them straight in the eye and smile.

Using blinking and tense responses as a means of screening means that people that are having a bad day get a friendly strip search just to brighten it up. At some point you have to say just fuck it and stay home. I know it makes their jobs easier harassing us and invading our privacy but in the end I'd rather not fly and I sure as hell don't want to hear the airlines whining about falling numbers of bookings when we are treated like animals. They can bite me.

Sooper Checkpointz (1)

rhizome (115711) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292361)

No more waving a wand to get through checkpoints -- the new checkpoint can detect if you have plans to set off a bomb before you even enter the building."

Let me (apparently) be the first to treat this claim with skepticism. Oh, anonymous submitters and their mysterious technologies that come out of the blue on a New Year's Day. I think there should at least be some disclosure that the author has a vested interest in people thinking that this is possible, but the practical effect is just going to be a technologizing of the "Idiot Security Guard" model they have going at the moment. What difference does it make if you are hassled for no reason because a computer randomly selected your boarding pass or if some slug of an official thinks your laptop bag is just a little too lame. You're still being hassled randomly.

The truth is that all of the DHS procedures produce only false positives. Why not economize and pay only union wages for this service rather than jillions for an overblown /dev/random?

The Big Picture Problem. (4, Insightful)

Vellmont (569020) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292375)

We all seem to have figured out that this system is a joke, so I won't address that.

The bigger problem is that the DHS really thinks something like this kind of system will work. We've seen several different screening systems, fingerprinting systems, etc, and they all share the same "whiz-bang technology" attribute. That is that somewhere, there's some great piece of hardware, software, or black box that's going to save us from "the terrorists" Real Soon Now. I guess I'm more than a little skeptical of this approach to the problem.

I don't know enough about the problem to know what the solution is (maybe just human operatives). But I do know enough about "whiz-bang" technology to know that it's snake oil.

White nerds rejoice (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292471)

Thank god for being an absurdly white nerdy looking guy with no fashion sense whatsoever, that is built like a ballerina.

I never realized how handy that is up until the security craze started.

checkpoint fun (1)

icepick72 (834363) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292535)

New game: Which driver having a BJ can get through the checkpoint without detection. That person will have the ultimate poker face.

Re:checkpoint fun (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26292667)

New game: Which driver having a BJ can get through the checkpoint without detection. That person will have the ultimate poker face.

If this system can't detect that someone walking though the checkpoint is currently receiving a blow job, it's even worse than the comments here expect.
Although there should be no problem getting volunteer test subjects.

No more "shoes off" on US flights? (1)

billsf (34378) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292547)

If there is anything I don't like about flying, its taking off your shoes when flying from the US. Seriously, airports have watched people in a number of different ways long before '9-11'. What I fear is two-fold: Security will rely too much on non-proven technology and anybody who'd blow themselves up or hijack a plane is a psychopath and probably won't show outside signs of intent. As one reader correctly said: "This is a remote polygraph." How many courts of law accept that as evidence?

Its not the 1% false-positive rate, but rather the apparent 12% false negative rate. There will always be a need for some sort of human security. Surely it can be better than the TSA's song and dance. Security is better at many airports of the West. Flying has been and always will be the safest way to travel -- even if there was no security at all. Its those very few psychopaths that make the headlines that make people actually believe terrorism is a problem.

BillSF
     

From the DHS website (1)

Jairun (982778) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292581)

http://www.dhs.gov/xres/programs/gc_1218480185439.shtm#9 [dhs.gov] Project Overview: The Homeland Security Advanced Research Project Agency (HSARPA) and S&T Directorate Human Factors Behavior Sciences (HFBS) Division Future Attribute Screening Technology (FAST) Project is an initiative to develop innovative, non-invasive technologies to screen people at security checkpoints. FAST is grounded in research on human behavior and psychophysiology, focusing on new advances in behavioral/human-centered screening techniques. The aim is a prototypical mobile suite (FAST M2) that would be used to increase the accuracy and validity of identifying persons with malintent (the intent or desire to cause harm). Identified individuals would then be directed to secondary screening, which would be conducted by authorized personnel. This project is part of the HFBS innovations portfolio (Homeland Security Advanced Research Project Agency Program).

scary title... (1)

whopub (1100981) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292611)

I wasn't logged in when I read it, so it looked like this:

"Security Checkpoints Predict What You Will Do on Thursday January 01..."

Odds of this working? Approx 0 (1)

CharlieG (34950) | more than 5 years ago | (#26292617)

I expect that this won't work - typical of any government research project 11 years out.

It's an idea they have - won't work

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