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TSA Can Now Force Passengers to Go Through Body Scanners

The Transportation Security Administration can now force passengers to go through body scanners..
Getty Images The Transportation Security Administration can now force passengers to go through body scanners.

Before the change, people could choose a physical screening

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) screeners at airports can now force passengers to go through body scanners, according to a new policy change.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has updated its protocol to no longer allow passengers to opt out of being electronically scanned at through Advanced Imaging Technology (AIT) machines at checkpoints. Before the change, people could choose a physical screening.

“While passengers may generally decline AIT screening in favor of physical screening, TSA may direct mandatory AIT screening for some passengers,” the DHS issued in a Dec. 18 policy update.

The change weakens the opt-out rule but doesn’t entirely eliminate it, a TSA spokesman told TIME. “Passengers undergoing screening will still have the option to decline an AIT screening in favor of a physical screening,” agency spokesman Mike England said in a statement. “However, some passengers will still be required to undergo AIT screenings as warranted by security considerations in order to safeguard transportation security.”

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