As the UK prepares to introduce its first full body scanning machines at Heathrow airport, the government has decided that passengers selected for screening in one of the machines has no right to refuse.
In the US, the scanners are being tested at several airports, and are only used when the passenger is selected for a secondary screening. Those passengers do have the right to refuse, and are then offered a regular pat-down.
The UK government ignored opposition from various human rights groups who claim the scanners breach privacy rules, especially when children are scanned.
In selecting passengers for a full body scan, the government has ruled out religious or ethnic profiling, opting for “behavioral profiling” instead. This means passengers who travel without bags, paid for tickets with cash or who behave erratically may be selected. Of course, this just means that terrorists will know exactly how to prevent drawing attention to themselves.
The European response to the failed terror attack back in December has been pretty swift, all airports with flights to the United States will soon have scanners in place.