Monday, March 17, 2008

Observations on airport (in)security


As I travel (and it's been a steady stream of airports in the past few weeks) I can't help but notice aidports' security. Nothing stands out more at me than walking up to a cluster of flat screens trying to locate my flight which I already know is late, and finding a big, silly Windows blue-screen staring back at me. I realize these aren't "critical" systems to the operation of the airport - but I would figure that if something like this was down - someone would notice! Apparently I'm asking too much. The same cluster of flat panels showed the Critical Windows Error for about 90 minutes, before I had to board my plane and go. No one noticed.

I wonder what else goes un-noticed? I wonder about all those service terminals at the un-manned gates. I wonder about that combination fingerprint reader, card proximity reader and pin-pad that sits there un-used at the fron of the security screening line. I wonder about the Ethernet jacks that are visible and plug-able in half-empty terminals late in the evening. I wonder about all the may-as-well-be-open Access Points that I am all too worried about to connect to.

It's an airport, right? It's supposed to be secured like Fort Knox, no? What's happened to all that money the government has poured into making consumer flight more secure? It's sure not showing at the airports... unless you count security in flat screens and glitzy paintings.


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