Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Security Procedures

Yesterday I went to the City-County Building to obtain a copy of my birth certificate for a Canadian trip I'm taking. (Actually, one must get such a thing at the State Offices but that's not what this blog is about.) As I approached the metal detectors I pulled my iPod out of my pocket and dropped it in the basket. As expected, the detector went off and I stepped back through to take off my belt and put it in the basket. The guard with the wand on the other side of the unit called me through, saying he knew what had caused the alarm. He scanned my front and it beeped at my waist and at my feet. He scanned my back and it beeped again at my feet.

I got my iPod back and he was done.

The wand went off at my waist and the guard assumed that it was my belt buckle. He was correct but I could have had a pistol stuffed in my underwear and I would have been waved through. The fact that the alarm went off for my feet was completely discounted. The steel toes of my boots were what actually set off the alarm but having a knife or a gun stuffed in my boot would have set off the wand exactly the same way.

Security like that is illusory.

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