Homeland Security: No laptops on the plane?

Homeland Security: No laptops on the plane?

Homeland Security: No laptops on the plane?

The Department of Homeland Security has decided to ban electronic devices like laptops from being carried on board all flights from Europe. No exception. Because nobody travels for business with a laptop or tablet, right? Is this a joke, or a bad SNL skit? Not according to the Hill who discusses the ban here:

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will reportedly ban laptops on all U.S.-bound flights from Europe amid increasing concern over terrorists trying to hide explosives in consumer electronics.

 

Okay, why are they doing this?

The DHS initially imposed the electronics ban on inbound flights coming from 10 different airports in Jordan, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Egypt, Qatar, Morocco and the United Arab Emirates.

Because nobody goes on business trips to Europe or the Middle East and no electronic devices are allowed on the plane, right? Wrong.

Under the policy, passengers are prohibited from carrying electronic devices larger than a cellphone — such as laptops, tablets, cameras and portable DVD players — onto cabins of select flights, but can still stow the items in checked luggage.

Really? How exactly does that make it safer to fly again?

CBS News also talks about the ban here.

DHS has been in talks with airlines and other stakeholders about the “threat environment” for some time, with the focus still on the possibility terrorists may have constructed an explosive that might not be detected by some airport scanning technology and appear to be a battery in a laptop or tablet. That is coupled with continued concern about former ISIS fighters from Western Europe returning home and being able to easily travel to the https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DH6QC6GdYVMU.S. on passports from countries that don’t require a visa.

Laptops are scary?

Checking the possible bomb into checked luggage will work just GREAT, guys! Because putting a potential explosive where nobody can get to it will be a great idea! And what a grand idea to have corporate laptops out of the hands of the traveler who is carrying sensitive information from a business trip. And luggage never gets lost, broken, or stolen right?

Privately, airlines are expressing concern about an expanded ban and have encouraged DHS to consider exploring other security measures like Explosive Trace Detection—swabbing all carry-on electronics or deploying CT scanners for carry-on bags. A TSA pilot program on those scanners is about a year behind schedule.

And how about profiling passengers like the Israelis do? Isn’t that the reason you have TSA agents at the gate, Mr. Kelly? Isn’t it their job to look for anything out of place (or at least they are supposed to do this)?

Royal Jordanian Air has a sense of humor:

Now seriously how many business travelers do not bring at least a tablet? My husband brings both and works on, well, sensitive information from the road. So does every other business traveler on the flight. And what stops said terrorist from setting the bomb off with the cell phone? Or setting a timer? On a device that is in checked baggage? Which, as I said before, is inaccessible while in flight. The following tweet says it all:

Mr. Trump, if you are serious about draining the swamp, perhaps you may want to take a look at Homeland Security? And maybe, you know, make it work? Train TSA and DHS agents to do their job better and give them equipment they need to make the skies safe? How about making travel less sucky?

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4 Comments
  • GWB says:

    terrorists may have constructed an explosive that might not be detected by some airport scanning technology

    OK, that’s actually an issue.

    and appear to be a battery in a laptop or tablet

    And this is not. Or shouldn’t be. Easiest way to solve this is to make them turn the device on and demonstrate it works. If the battery is really a bomb, then it won’t work. Heck, last time I carried a regular camera through they made me show them it worked – had to turn it on, let them look through the viewfinder, etc.
    This is also why they force you to put your laptop through the scanner out of the bag (or unobstructed) – so the x-ray can penetrate and show the interior of the machine.

    Besides, if they allow cell phones through, what’s to stop a terrorist from simply carrying a Samsung phone on board and doing everyone in that way?

    Of course, much like the anti-gun position of the progressives, this is going about things backwards – trying to solve the symptoms and calling it a cure, instead of stopping the actual perpetrators. There’s a reason most people call it “Security Theater”.

    • Gail Boer says:

      PanAm Flight 103 was taken down by a bomb in the checked luggage. And LOL at the Samsung phone. Profiling would be nice too: El Al seems to have this down to a….science.

  • Stretch says:

    I’m sure there’s a fine return on all the computers “confiscated” by TSA.
    Yeah, I’m a cynic.

    • Gail Boer says:

      And I am sure the corporate espionage issues are all addressed by the fine professionals in the TSA. Cynic too.

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