Naked X-rays could replace airport security pat-downs

By Paul Kerstein

For those who always manage to set off the metal detectors at airport security checkpoints, there will soon be a second option besides the dreaded pat down.The Transportation Security Administration started using new airport x-rays at the Sky Harbor International Airport in Phoenix, Ariz. early in Dec. 2006, according to Charleston Daily Mail.The x-ray uses a new technology called backscatter, which has the ability to show a person's figure in great detail, including outlines of one's breasts and genitals. And if that's too invasive for you, there's still the option of the physical pat down.The screenings can reveal guns, knives, or explosives that are taped to the body and might not be typically seen in a regular x-ray or metal detector. But while screeners can blur certain areas of the body for privacy concerns, many travelers are still not happy about it.Right now, the backscatter x-ray is a voluntary process, but if the TSA decides it's saving a lot of time and it's more secure, they may require it.Here's a little more information at the TSA's Website, including a nifty video on how it works.

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