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2003-04-03

Green You Go, Yellow You Are Questioned and Red You Don’t Fly: As Delta Airlines Prepares to Rate the Terror Threat of Every Passenger, We Host a Debate On Privacy and Security

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There is a new website that you might have heard of. Its address is boycottdelta.org. Its logo is "Less leg room. No privacy."

It was recently created after news reports that Delta Airlines would become the first airline to test a new passenger screening system that attempts to rate the terror threat of each passenger.

The system is called CAPPS II, the Computer Assisted Passenger Prescreening System. CAPPS II would require background checks on all airline passengers when they book a ticket, including checking credit reports, banking and criminal record.

Based on this information, every passenger would be assigned a color-coded threat level. Greens will pass through security as normal. Yellows would require additional screening. Reds would be barred from flying.

The screening program is expected to begin a trial run at three Delta airports.

Today we are going to have a debate on this and other issues related to privacy and surveillance.

  • David Sobel, general counsel of the Electronic Privacy Information Center.
  • Barbara Simons, fellow and former president at the Association for Computing Machinery.
  • Michael Scardaville, policy analyst with the The Heritage Foundation and Davis Institute for International Policy Studies.

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