Manchester airport to trial new “privacy friendly” scanners

18 Sep 2012 by BusinessTraveller
Manchester airport is to end its current trial of “naked” body scanners, replacing the technology with a new trial of new generation “privacy friendly” scanners. From next month the airport will install five of the new scanners across its three terminals, which “include a feature which automatically processes images of passengers using a system that eliminates the need for an airport security officer to view the ghost-like body outlines”. The technology will analyse the scan and present airport staff with a stick figure diagram showing where to look for hidden objects. The new machines will use radio frequency-based millimetre wave technology rather than the low dose x-rays used by the current back scatter body scanners. The technology is similar to that used in safety systems to identify humans or objects that have fallen onto subway rail tracks in the US. Manchester airport has been forced to close its current trial of backscatter body scanners because “legislation from Brussels excludes the technology”. "We’re baffled by this situation because health experts say they are safe plus the overwhelming majority of our passengers and security staff prefer body scanners to frisking and it’s frustrating that Brussels has allowed this successful trial to end", said Andrew Harrison, Chief Operating Officer at MAG, Manchester Airport’s parent company. The trial of the new technology is expected to last three months, starting on October 1. For more information visit Report by Mark Caswell
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