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TSA to background check fliers for expedited airport security ahead of time

Posting in Transportation

Standing in line, the queue long, necessary security checks not only hold up and frustrate passengers, but every minute counts towards the financial health of the airport itself.

More time going through security means less time to shop, less revenue generation, fewer slots for airlines, and I'd wager more security staff were hired post 9/11.

On my last flight to Israel, I spoke to a shop manager after navigating security, and she told me that stringent security measures "devastate" stores in the waiting area.

We'd all agree security is necessary, but it has severe financial cost. In the U.S., to tackle this problem, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) launched a scheme called the PreCheck program, which allows 'trusted' fliers to breeze through security.

As previously reported on SmartPlanet, the $85 scheme allows you to go through an expedited screening area, avoid taking off your belt, shoes and jacket, and also lets you leave liquids and electronics in your carry-on luggage.

The TSA PreCheck scheme requires your fingerprint, and information including height, weight, eye color, birthday and address. However, U.S. travelers will now be chosen on a case-by-case basis by the TSA to use the expedited lanes without being a member of the scheme or handing over any additional information, according to the agency.

The TSA says that passengers will be chosen ahead of time, once the agency has completed a background check on them.

The agency wants to have 25 percent of fliers using the scheme by the end of next year, while only two percent of passengers signed up in 2012. The PreCheck program is being expanded from 40 U.S. airports to 100, according to a TSA announcement last week.

Via: Skift

Image credit: Flickr

— By on September 11, 2013, 6:18 PM PST

Charlie Osborne

Contributing Editor

Charlie Osborne is a freelance journalist and photographer based in London. In addition to SmartPlanet, she also writes for business technology website ZDNet and consumer technology site CNET. She holds a degree in medical anthropology from the University of Kent. Follow her on Twitter. Disclosure