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Transportation Security Administration Being Sued Over Full Body Scanners

After full body scanners have been in place for nearly a decade in airports across the country, the Transportation Security Administration is now being sued over its full body scanners by a coalition of groups saying that the TSA did not implement the required regulations to govern their use.

Three government watchdog groups–the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI), National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE), and The Rutherford Institution–have filed a suit saying that the TSA never bothered to set rules for its use of the scanners.

“There is no regulation controlling the use of body scanners right now,” CEI representative Marc Scribner said. “TSA has been using scanners the last seven years but that entire span of time they’ve been operating without a regulation.”

The new lawsuit capitalizes on a 2011 ruling by a D.C. federal appeals court that maintained that the TSA must create and implement a set of rules by 2013. On the heels of the court ruling, Congress also mandated the creation of such rules. Apparently the TSA still has not gotten around to obeying these rulings.

The scanners have been in place since 2007 but have been controversial since day one. Privacy activists have always been opposed to the scanners especially after several cases of misuse by TSA agents.

The devices have achieved such a bad reputation that in 2013 the TSA announced that it intended to begin removing the scanners.

Further, by 2014 a study was released that proved that the scanners were not even very effective. The study found that the scanners were so easily tricked that guns and bombs were able to be smuggled into the nation’s airports.

“I think after four years of TSA essentially flouting the law and more than two years since the last meaningful action of the agency, we are confident the court will see TSA’s lack of action troubling, and that it warrants a court order to speed up this required process,” CEI’s Scribner insisted.

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston or email the author at igcolonel@hotmail.com

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