Aviation Security Essay

3359 words - 14 pages

Invasive Security: Does it Work

Bruno Gerardo

Introduction to Canadian Aviation (MOS 1022F)

Dr. Suzanne Kearns

23 November, 2011

On September 11, 2001, the world watched in terror as America was under attack. As a result of these events, the aviation industry was restructured to improve reliability and security of commercial air travel. Although the new security changes have improved the overall safety of air travel, concerns have been raised that the changes introduced are invasive to privacy, and are an infringement of individual rights. Biometric and advanced imaging technology have been criticized for this reason, however, they have been effective at preventing ...view middle of the document...

Following the attacks of September 11, 2001, critical flaws were exposed in the aviation industry that required an in-depth analysis of airport security (National Commission, 2004). It has become a major priority to evaluate and improve the security of air travel around the globe. The effects of September 11th, 2001 have not only affected the airlines in United States, it also changed the aviation industry on a national level (Blunka, Clarka, & McGibany, 2006). Airline companies experienced a significant financial loss because travellers were choosing alternative methods of transportation, as they were fearful of additional terrorist attacks (Blunka, et al., 2006). In order to increase the number of air travellers, the industry needed to regain their confidence in the security provided by the airline industry so that passengers would feel safe and protected (Gonzales, 2002). Security changes needed to be reviewed as the system failed and caused countless deaths of innocent lives. Countries throughout the world, especially in the western hemisphere, quickly developed new security regulations. Some of these regulations included new security measures, biometric technology, and advanced imagining technology (AIT). Although these regulations served to improve the safety of air travel, they also raised concerns of invasion of privacy (Campbell, 2005). The purpose of this paper is to analyze the security measures that have been introduced as a result of September 11th 2001, and evaluate the effectiveness of the changes and how they impact both safety and privacy.
Airport Security Flaws Prior to 9/11
The 9/11 Commission Report conducted in 2004, revealed weaknesses in aviation security prior to September 11, 2001 (National Commission, 2004). The al Qaeda terrorists responsible for the attacks were able to exploit these weaknesses in order to complete their mission (National Commission, 2004). The flaws uncovered in the system included that the pre-screening process did not focus on detecting potential hijackers; rather it focused on detecting potential aircraft bombers (Elias, 2005). The rules in regards to checkpoint screening and small knives were negligent (Elias, 2005). The overall in-flight security measures were inadequate as flight decks were easily accessible, and air marshals were nonexistent (Elias, 2005). An industry-wide strategy regarding how to comply with hijackers in a non-confrontational manner had not been developed. In addition, the protocols for executing coordinated military action did not address multiple or suicidal hijackings (National Commission, 2004). The 9/11 Commission Report (2004) also identified areas of change and made recommendations to improve security in order to reduce the likelihood of a future terrorist attack in the United States.
Security Changes Post 9/11
After September 11, 2001, the United States security system was restructured and many changes were introduced (National Commission, 2004). One of...

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