|Aviation Security USA|
In this ever changing environment, political instability is plain to see in almost every region of the world, that includes airspace..
This political instability can have a knock on effect for travellers, businessmen and members of government or non-government agencies.
With that, the SECURITY WEBSITE is pleased to bring you an up to date Aviation Security advice section. This information is vital for your piece of mind and for your travel planning. Forewarned is Forearmed.
This section of the Security Website is updated on a daily basis, however our information is drawn from the US Department of Transport and the UK Department for Transport who are the World leaders in Travel Security Information.
Below you will find information pertaining to Aviation Security and advice
U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Aviation: Passenger Security Screening
The most visible effort of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) to protect air travelers is the screening process performed at airport security checkpoints. They accomplish this with over 43,000 trained and certified Transportation Security Officers and inspectors stationed at over 450 airports and 7,000 baggage-screening locations across the country. If you have any questions related to passenger screening matters, or wish to report security violations and concerns, please contact the TSA directly at 1.866.289.9673.
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SECURE FLIGHT PROGRAM STARTING O1 NOVEMBER 2011
Secure Flight, the Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) behind-the-scenes watch list matching program, fulfills a key recommendation of the 9/11 Commission by assuming responsibility of watch list matching from individual airlines. By establishing a consistent watch list matching system, Secure Flight enhances aviation security and more effectively facilitates air travel for passengers. Secure Flight requires airlines to collect a passenger’s full name (as it appears on government-issued ID), date of birth, gender and Redress Number (if applicable). By providing complete information, passengers can significantly decrease the likelihood of watch list misidentification. Secure Flight watch list matching takes a matter of seconds to complete, and providing this data enables passengers to print their boarding passes at home or at an airline kiosk. For airlines, November 1, 2010, marks the end of the year-long grace period to clear out their systems of older reservations made before Secure Flight requirements took effect in October 2009. After November 1, 2010, Secure Flight will not conduct watch list matching or approve the issuance of a boarding pass by an airline if complete passenger data is not submitted.
Questions and Answers What does the November 1 airline compliance date mean for passengers?
The November 1 date requires passengers to provide complete Secure Flight passenger data when booking reservations so TSA can conduct watch list matching and approve airlines to issue a boarding pass. To avoid unnecessary delays and prevent misidentifications, passengers should provide complete Secure Flight data when booking airline travel, whether they have booked directly with the airline, a travel agent or an online booking site.
Will passengers still be able to book a ticket within 72 hours of a flight?
Yes. TSA’s Secure Flight program can conduct watch list matching for passengers up until the time of the flight. Passengers will be prompted to provide Secure Flight information when booking travel. For reservations booked on short notice, or within 72 hours of the scheduled flight departure time, airlines must submit the required passenger information as soon as the reservation is made.
What happens if a passenger has an existing reservation for travel after November 1, 2010, and did not provide complete Secure Flight data when booking his or her flight?
TSA advises passengers to contact their airlines or booking sources prior to arriving at the airport to ensure they have provided their full name, date of birth, gender, and Redress number (if applicable) as part of their reservations. While TSA’s watch list matching takes a matter of seconds and can be completed up until the time of departure, passengers should be aware that a boarding pass will not be issued until the airline submits complete passenger data to Secure Flight.
What if a passenger’s boarding pass and ID do not match exactly?
Secure Flight and travel document checking are both critical security functions, yet they serve different purposes at different points in the security process. Secure Flight is a behind-the-scenes watch list matching process that takes place before checkpoint screening. Secure Flight asks that passengers enter their names as they appear on their government ID and passengers should strive to stay consistent between the name on their ID and the information they provide when booking their reservation. Once a passenger receives their boarding pass, the Secure Flight process is already complete. At the security checkpoint, TSA strives to ensure your identification and boarding pass are authentic and validate you are who you say you are. Small differences in the name on the boarding pass and ID, like middle initials, should not impact your travel. It is not uncommon for the information printed on boarding passes to differ slightly from the information on IDs, depending on the boarding pass printing practices of individual airlines.
Q. What is Secure Flight and what does it do?
A. Secure Flight is a behind the scenes program that streamlines the watch list matching process. It will improve the travel experience for all passengers, including those who have been misidentified in the past.
Q. What information will be collected by Secure Flight?
A. When fully implemented, Secure Flight will require all airlines to provide a passenger's name as it appears on the government issued ID they plan to travel with, date of birth, gender, and redress number (if available).
Q. If the name printed on my boarding pass is different than what appears on my government ID, will I still be able to fly?
A. Secure Flight is a behind-the-scenes process that TSA and airlines collaborate on to compare the information you provide against government watch lists. The additional data elements that you may be asked to provide, such as date of birth and gender, serve to better differentiate you from individuals on the government watch list.
Due to difference in boarding pass systems, boarding passes may not always display the exact name you provided when booking your travel. The name you provide when booking your travel is used to perform the watch list matching before a boarding pass is ever issued, so small differences should not impact your travel. You should ensure that the name provided when booking your travel matches the government ID that you will use when traveling. Small differences between the passenger's ID the passenger's reservation information, and the boarding pass (such as the use of a middle initial instead of a full middle name or no middle name/initial at all, hyphens or apostrophes) should not cause a problem for the passenger.
Q. Why is Secure Flight collecting this information?
A. TSA determined that mandating the provision of the additional data elements of date of birth and gender would greatly reduce the number of passengers misidentified as a match to the watch list. It is to the passenger's advantage to provide the required data elements as doing so may prevent delays or inconveniences at the airport, particularly for those individuals who have been misidentified in the past.
Q. What happens if my airline didn't ask for any of that information?
A. Secure Flight will be phased-in and each airline will be incorporating the necessary changes into their systems over the coming months. Passengers shouldn't be concerned if particular airlines don't ask them to provide the additional information right away; it should not impact their travel. Each airline will request this information as their capability to capture it is integrated into their individual systems.
Q. How do I know if I am on the No Fly list?
A. If a passenger successfully obtains a boarding pass, his/her name is not on the No-Fly list. If a passenger feels they have been misidentified, redress is an opportunity to seek resolution and avoid future delays. The affected passengers often have the same or a similar name to someone on the watch list. Any passenger who believes he/she has been delayed or denied boarding; delayed or denied entry into the U.S. at a port of entry; or been subject to enhanced screening or inspection may seek redress through the DHS Traveler Redress Inquiry Program (DHS TRIP) at www.dhs.gov/trip. DHS TRIP provides a single portal for travelers to seek redress for adverse screening experiences and to resolve possible watch list misidentification issues.
Secure Flight is a program developed by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in response to a key 9/11 Commission recommendation: uniform watch list matching by TSA. The mission of the Secure Flight program is to enhance the security of domestic and international commercial air travel through the use of improved watch list matching.
Secure Flight conducts uniform prescreening of passenger information against federal government watch lists for domestic and international flights. TSA is taking over this responsibility from airlines. Secure Flight will conduct passenger watch list matching for all domestic and international passengers traveling on covered flights into, out of, within, or over the United States. Secure Flight will also apply to point-to-point international flights operated by U.S.- based airlines.
By assuming watch list matching responsibilities from the airlines, TSA:
Decreases the chance for compromised watch list data by limiting its distribution.
Provides earlier identification of potential matches, allowing for expedited notification of law enforcement and threat management.
Provides a fair, equitable, and consistent matching process across all airlines.
Reduces instances of misidentified individuals.
Offers consistent application of an integrated redress process for misidentified individuals through the Department of Homeland Security's Travel Redress Inquiry Program (DHS TRIP)
Under the Secure Flight program, passengers making a reservation are required to provide their full name (as it appears on the identification document used when traveling), date of birth, and gender. TSA matches this information against government watch lists to:
Identify known and suspected terrorists.
Prevent individuals on the No Fly List from boarding an aircraft.
Identify individuals on the Selectee List for enhanced screening.
Facilitate passenger air travel.
Protect individuals' privacy.
After matching passenger information against government watch lists, Secure Flight transmits the matching results back to airlines.
Religious and Cultural Needs
Our general security considerations for religious or cultural needs allow you multiple options. If you do not want to go through the metal detector you may request a personal search (pat-down inspection) as an alternative. You may also ask the Security Officer for a private area for this personal search and will be provided a Security Officer of the same gender. If you refuse appropriate screening you will not be allowed to pass the security checkpoint and you will be unable to board your plane.
Loose Fitting Garments
You are permitted to wear loose fitting or religious garments during the screening process. You may be directed to additional screening if your clothing (religious or otherwise) is loose fitting or large enough to hide prohibited items. If you are directed by the security officer to proceed to additional screening, then you will undergo a combination of hand-wand screening and/or pat-down inspections that could include any portion of the body and head area that requires further examination.
At any time during the screening process, you may request that screening of your person or property take place in a private screening area. It is our policy that passengers should be screened by a Security Officer of the same gender.
On August 4, 2007, TSA implemented revisions to its screening procedures for head coverings. TSA does not conduct ethnic or religious profiling, and employs multiple checks and balances to ensure profiling does not happen.
All members of the traveling public are permitted to wear head coverings (whether religious or not) through the security checkpoints. The new standard procedures subject all persons wearing head coverings to the possibility of additional security screening, which may include a pat-down search of the head covering. Individuals may be referred for additional screening if the security officer cannot reasonably determine that the head area is free of a detectable threat item. If the issue cannot be resolved through a pat-down search, the individual will be offered the opportunity to remove the head covering in a private screening area. TSA's security procedures, including the procedures for screening head coverings, are designed to ensure the security of the traveling public. These procedures are part of TSA's multi-layered approach to security screening.
Religious, Cultural, Or Ceremonial Items
Religious knives, swords and other objects similar to the one on the right, are not permitted through the security checkpoint. We advise you to place such items in your checked baggage. Check our permitted and prohibited list for more information.
You may request a hand-inspection from our Security Officers for your religious, cultural or ceremonial items. If the item is prohibited from the cabin of the aircraft you will be asked to place the item in your checked baggage. If the item is delicate, fragile or special handling is otherwise required please let the Security Officer know so that he or she can handle the item accordingly.
The TSA's security screening procedures are a multiple step process each passenger must go through before accessing their departure gate. Passengers who refuse screening at any point may not proceed beyond the screening area:
X-Ray screening is used to check all carry-on baggage, coats, jackets and similar garments, electronic devices, metal objects, and footwear.
Metal detector (Magnetometer) screening requires the passenger to simply walk through a detection unit. If an object sets off the detector, the individual undergoes further screening. Passengers may request a pat-down inspection instead of this screening.
Body image screening is the latest technology deployed by the TSA. It requires the passenger to walk through a detection unit, which creates a real-time image. This image is analyzed for irregularities. If any are detected, the individual undergoes further screening. The image is deleted once screening is complete.
Additional screening performed if the individual is selected for the screening, or if metal detector screening triggered an alarm. This screening includes at least a hand-wand inspection to assist the screener in identifying the item that set off an alarm. TSA began deploying state-of-the-art advanced imaging technology in 2007. This technology can detect a wide range of threats to transportation security in a matter of seconds to protect passengers and crews. Imaging technology is an integral part of TSA's effort to continually look for new technologies that help ensure travel remains safe and secure by staying ahead of evolving threats.
TSA uses two types of imaging technology, millimeter wave and backscatter. Currently, there are 488 imaging technology units at 78 airports.
Advanced imaging technology screening is safe for all passengers, and the technology meets national health and safety standards. TSA has implemented strict measures to protect passenger privacy, which is ensured through the anonymity of the image. Additionally, advanced imaging technology screening is optional to all passengers.
The TSA also selects passengers at random for additional screening. These passengers may be inspected with Explosive Trace Detection (ETD) machines. Explosives Trace Detection (ETD) is technology used at security checkpoints around the country to screen carry-on baggage and passengers for traces of explosives. Officers may swab a piece of luggage or passenger hands and then use ETD technology to test for explosives. The swab is placed inside the ETD unit which analyzes the content for the presence of potential explosive residue.
TSA is expanding its use of ETD technology in airports as part of our layered approach to aviation security and to keep passengers safe.
Passengers may experience screening of their hands using an ETD swab at airports. This additional screening measure could take place at the security checkpoint, in the checkpoint queue, or boarding areas. To ensure the health of travelers, screening swabs are disposed of after each use. Since ETD is used on a random basis, passengers should not expect to see the same thing at every airport or each time they travel.
Watch demo of Explosives Trace Detection Technology. (download) (wmv, 10.6mb).Travelers with implanted medical devices such as pacemakers should carry identification verifying their condition as these devices can set off alarms. The TSA can screen travelers with disabilities and medical conditions differently, if necessary.
Although the screening process is relatively quick, it does take time and delays can ensue, especially during peak times. The TSA publishes a historical record of checkpoint wait times to assist travelers in planning for their next flight. Please note that actual wait times can vary, and are greatly influenced by any number of factors that affect the number of passengers to be screened.
The agency constantly fields new equipment and protocols, such as Explosive Detection Systems (EDS). Ever wonder what happens to your bag once you check it with your airline? We screen every bag - 100% - of all bags placed on an airplane, whether taken as carry-on or checked with an airline. With nearly 2 million people flying each day, it's a Herculean task.
We are able to meet this requirement by relying on Explosive Detection System (EDS) machines, which work like the MRI machines in your doctor's office. Through a sophisticated analysis of each checked bag, the EDS machines can quickly determine if a bag contains a potential threat or not. If a weapon or explosive is detected, the machines alert our security officers so they can manage the bag appropriately. In some cases, the alarm is quickly resolved and in others law enforcement and the bomb squad may be called in.
When used in conjunction with an airport's automated baggage handling system, we achieve dramatic improvements in both security and efficiency. They also evaluate new screening methods and systems, such as Bottled Liquid Scanners. TSA and our security partners conducted extensive explosives testing since August 10, 2006 and determined that liquids, aerosols and gels, in limited quantities, are safe to bring aboard an aircraft. The one bag limit per traveler limits the total amount each traveler can bring. Consolidating the bottles into one bag and X-raying them separately from the carry-on bag enables security officers to quickly clear the items.
3-1-1 for carry-ons = 3.4 ounce (100ml) bottle or less (by volume) ; 1 quart-sized, clear, plastic, zip-top bag; 1 bag per passenger placed in screening bin. One-quart bag per person limits the total liquid volume each traveler can bring. 3.4 ounce (100ml) container size is a security measure.
Be prepared. Each time TSA searches a carry-on it slows down the line. Practicing 3-1-1 will ensure a faster and easier checkpoint experience.
3-1-1 is for short trips. If in doubt, put your liquids in checked luggage.
Declare larger liquids. Medications, baby formula and food, and breast milk are allowed in reasonable quantities exceeding three ounces and are not required to be in the zip-top bag. Declare these items for inspection at the checkpoint. Officers may need to open these items to conduct additional screening.
CCastScope technology provides security officers with a means to ensure that a cast or prosthetic does not contain a concealed threat while maintaining the dignity and privacy of the passenger. TSA began deploying CastScope machines to several major airports nationwide in 2008. CastScope was deployed to airports based on the airport's proximity to military hospitals or large rehabilitation facilities that serve amputees, sports events for disability groups, vacation destinations utilized by amputees and in airports that see large volumes of military severely injured. In those airports where CastScope is available, screening using this technology is mandatory.
TSA worked closely with special interest groups like the Amputee Coalition of America and others to determine best practices, operational suitability and modify the technology so that it best meets the needs of the traveling public. When TSA piloted CastScope in 2007, passengers with prosthetics, casts, and braces participated on a voluntary basis.
Information on current and future techniques and systems, as well as an active discussion of screening procedures, technologies and related subjects, is available on the TSA's public forum, Checkpoint Evolution.
Myth Busters Archive
Click HERE for some answers on aviation travel myths.
Additional contact information for specific issues is available from the TSA.
While every hostage situation is different, there are some general considerations to keep in mind.
The U.S. Government's policy is firm: we do not make concessions to terrorists. When Americans are abducted overseas, we look to the host government to exercise its responsibility under international law to protect all persons within its territories and to bring about the safe release of hostages. We work closely with these governments from the outset of a hostage-taking incident to ensure that our citizens and other victims are released as quickly and safely as possible.
At the outset of a terrorist incident, the terrorists typically are tense, high-strung and may behave irrationally. It is extremely important that you remain calm and alert and manage your own behavior.
Avoid resistance and sudden or threatening movements. Do not struggle or try to escape unless you are certain of being successful. Don't try to be a hero, endangering yourself and others.
Consciously put yourself in a mode of passive cooperation. Talk normally. Do not complain, avoid belligerency, and comply with all orders and instructions.
If questioned, keep your answers short. Don't volunteer information or make unnecessary overtures.
Make a concerted effort to relax. Prepare yourself mentally, physically and emotionally for the possibility of a long ordeal.
Try to remain inconspicuous, avoid direct eye contact and the appearance of observing your captors' actions.
Avoid alcoholic beverages. Eat what they give you, even if it does not look or taste appetizing, but keep consumption of food and drink at a moderate level. A loss of appetite and weight is normal.
If you are involved in a lengthier, drawn-out situation, try to establish a rapport with your captors, avoiding political discussions or other confrontational subjects.
Establish a daily program of mental and physical activity.
Think positively. Avoid a sense of despair. Rely on your inner resources. Remember that you are a valuable commodity to your captors. It is important to them to keep you alive and well.
The Consular Section can provide updated information on the security situation in a country.
If you are ill or injured, contact the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate for a list of local physicians and medical facilities. If you request, consular officers will help you contact family or friends. If necessary, a consul can assist in the transfer of funds from family or friends in the United States . Payment of hospital and other medical expenses is your responsibility.
Should you find yourself in legal difficulty, contact a consular officer immediately. Consular officers cannot serve as attorneys, give legal advice, or get you out of jail. . If you are arrested, consular officials will visit you, advise you of your rights under local laws, provide a list of local attorneys who speak English and who may have had experience in representing U.S. citizens, and ensure that you are held under humane conditions and are treated fairly under local law. A consular officer will contact your family or friends if you desire. When necessary, consuls can transfer money from home for you and will try to get relief for you, including food and clothing in countries where this is a problem. If you are detained, remember that under international treaties and customary international law, you have the right to talk to the U.S. consul. If you are denied this right, be politely persistent. Try to have someone get in touch for you.
Resources for U.S. Citizen Crime Victims
If you become the victim of a crime overseas, contact the nearest U.S. embassy, consulate, or consular agency for assistance. Also contact local police to report the incident and obtain immediate help with safety concerns.
While consular officials cannot investigate a crime, provide legal advice, represent you in court, serve as official interpreters or translators, or pay legal, medical, or other fees for U.S. citizens, they can assist crime victims in many other ways. Consular personnel overseas are familiar with local government agencies and resources in the countries in which they are located, and they can help you::
replace a stolen passport
Victim Compensation: All states operate crime victim compensation programs and nearly half of them offer benefits to their residents who are victims of violent crime overseas. (See contact information for state compensation programs below.) These state compensation programs provide financial assistance to eligible victims for reimbursement of expenses such as medical treatment, counseling, funeral costs, lost income or loss of support, and others. Generally victim compensation programs require the victim to report the crime to law enforcement and they usually request a copy of the police report.
Contact Information for Victim Compensation and Assistance Programs :
The toll-free 24 hours a day/7 days a week hotline for sexual assault crisis counseling and referrals in the United States is 1-800-656-HOPE. It is operated by a non-profit organization, RAINN (Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network), which also has information on the Internet at http://www.rainn.org/ .
Information about local sexual assault victim assistance programs in the U.S. is also available from each state’s sexual assault coalition. Contact information for these state coalitions are listed on the web site of the U.S. Department of Justice Violence Against Women Office, http://www.usdoj.gov/ovw/ .
The toll-free 24 hours a day /7 days a week National Domestic Violence Hotline, which provides crisis counseling and referrals in the U.S. is 1-800-799-SAFE.
Information about local domestic violence victim assistance programs in the U.S. is also available from each state’s domestic violence coalition. Contact information for these state coalitions is listed at the web site of the U.S. Department of Justice Violence Against Women Office, http://www.usdoj.gov/ovw/ .
The toll-free 24 hours a day/7 days a week crisis counseling and referral line for families and friends of those who have died by violence is 1-888-818-POMC. It is operated by a non-profit organization, POMC, Inc. (The National Organization of Parents of Murdered Children), which also has information on the Internet at http://www.pomc.org/ .
Information about national and local resources for victims and family members of victims of drunk driving crashes is available at the web site of Mothers Against Drunk Driving, http://www.madd.org/ .
Contact information for non-emergency victim assistance services in communities throughout the U.S. is available at the web site of the U.S. Department of Justice Office for Victims of Crime, http://ovc.ncjrs.org/findvictimservices/ .
Information for crime victims on the impact of crime, safety planning, legal rights and civil legal remedies, and options for assistance and referrals to local programs is also available from the National Crime Victim Center (NCVC). Call toll free (8:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. EST) 1-800-FYI-CALL or call TTY for hearing impaired (8:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. EST) 1-800-211-7996. Information is also available on the Internet at http://www.ncvc.org/ .
Information and referral to victim assistance programs is available from the National Organization for Victim Assistance (NOVA). Call toll-free 24 hours a day / 7 days a week 1-800-TRY-NOVA. Information is also available on the Internet at http://www.try-nova.org/ .
Information about victim assistance programs in approximately 20 countries is available at the web site of Victim Assistance Online, http://www.vaonline.org/.
Also, consult the State Department brochure entitled Help for American Victims of Crime Overseas.
Planning Another Trip?
For more information on the following publications, please consult http://travel.state.gov web site.
General entry and visa information for these and other countries are available in Foreign Entry Requirements.
BEFORE YOU GO
U.S. citizens living or traveling abroad are encouraged to register with the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate through the State Department’s travel registration web site to obtain updated information on travel and security. American citizens without Internet access may register directly with the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate. By registering, American citizens make it easier for the Embassy or Consulate to contact them in case of emergency.
U.S. citizens are strongly encouraged to maintain a high level of vigilance, be aware of local events, and take the appropriate steps to bolster their personal security. For additional information, please refer to A Safe Trip Abroad.
Please check out the Security Website Travel Alerts section HERE for even more updates that may affect YOU.
Further information can be checked at the Department for Transports Home Website HERE
The SW Team.........