TSA unveils self-service screening process: Here’s how it works


The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) unveiled a self-service screening checkpoint option at Las Vegas’ Harry Reid International Airport aimed at reducing the number of secondary screenings or pat-downs needed. 

This is the first time that the Department of Homeland Security is piloting technology that will allow passengers to “complete the screening process with minimal to no assistance” from transportation security officers. It also allows them to go at their own pace, the TSA said Wednesday. 

“The aim is to provide a near self-sufficient passenger screening process while enabling passengers to directly receive on-person alarm information and allow for the passenger self-resolution of those alarms to reduce instances where a pat-down or secondary screening procedure would be necessary,” the TSA said. 

Starting in mid-March, PreCheck passengers at TSA’s Innovation Checkpoint will be the first travelers to test out the system, which has the “same rigorous screening standards and rules” that are required in TSA PreCheck lanes, according to the TSA. 


How It Works and What It Looks Like: 

There is a video monitor that provides step-by-step instructions for passengers to complete their screening. For instance, it will inform them what size bin to grab and what needs to go inside.

Once they are screened and cleared for travel, a pair of automated exit doors will open, so passengers can grab their belongings and head to their gates.  

While the goal is to have minimal assistance, officers will still be there to ensure that passengers are following the security protocols. 

The technology is a result of a joint research and development effort by TSA’s Innovation Task Force and the Screening at Speed team at DHS’s Science and Technology Directorate to boost security effectiveness, reducing checkpoint wait times and keeping travelers and officers safer by minimizing person-to-person contact. 

This is particularly important as the number of passengers increases year over year, according to Dimitri Kusnezov, the DHS under secretary for science and technology. 


Harry Reid International Airport at Las Vegas.

“We are pushing the envelope with new technologies and concepts toward designing the airport of the future. Self-paced screening is one step toward building that future,” Kusnezov said. 

TSA Administrator David Pekoske said this prototype will give the agency an “opportunity to collect valuable user data and insights, and explore opportunities to apply parts of the prototype to other airport security checkpoints.”

In particular, the TSA plans to collect passenger feedback and data on the system to inform future design requirements and system development as well as to better understand how passengers and officers interact with the system. 

FOX Business’ Pilar Arias contributed to this report. 

Read the full article here


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