GOVERNMENT SECURITY asked readers of the SECURITY BEAT e-mail newsletter to respond to the following topic:
DO YOU THINK YOUR CIVIL LIBERTIES AND/OR PRIVACY ARE VIOLATED BY GOVERNMENT PROGRAMS SUCH AS CAPPS II?
“I think that to allow me to navigate the airports system in a fast and user-friendly manner on a twice-per-week basis is a good thing. To subject others — criminal or tourist — to the CAPPS II program is also a good thing.”
— RAY YOUNG, vice president, Florida region, West-Tek International Security
“CAPPS II crossed the line. It is search without a warrant as far as I am concerned.”
— JOHN J. STRAUCHS, Systech Group, Inc, Reston, Va.
“I am a frequent business traveler and am subjected to the caprices of the TSA almost weekly. In addition to the humiliation of very public ‘personal’ searches, I have had the contents of my wallet emptied out on airport terminal floors and all my credit cards erased by metal detection wands with overly sensitive settings. Give these people more power and more access to our personal lives? NEVER! We need to explore ways to reduce the intrusions into our privacy that already exist. In today’s “security” climate, I have learned just how the Jews must have felt in Hitler’s 1938 Germany.”
— JERRY W. WILLIAMS, senior quality assurance consultant, Conroe, Texas
“Our civil liberties cannot be ignored, but neither can the welfare of our fellow citizens. Sharing information across governmental agencies may be the only realistic way to insure the general welfare and safety of society as a whole.”
— DICK STUTZMAN, director of facilities management, Bridgewater (Va.) Retirement Community
“What I have found is that only people or groups affiliated with causing crime or having something to hide object to inspection of oneself or available information. The average law-abiding citizen has little concern for any inspection other than causing a delay. Most feel safer and at ease knowing a thorough screening has been provided and hope it will weed out any potential for future mishap, grief or expense.”
— JIM FREDERICK, facility operations manager, Troy, Mich.
“As a security professional, I personally have no problems with giving up a little private information about myself in order to get ‘approved’ for a lesser degree of screening in airports. I see it as no different than applying for a security clearance in order to work on a government project or job.”
— JIM PRINCEHORN, senior security advisor, Business Protection Specialists Inc., New York
“False ID’s are easily had by real terrorists. It has been noted that the rise of CCTV in Britain was started as a response to IRA terrorism. Not a single IRA terrorist has been caught as a result of CCTV cameras. Will obtaining a false ID stop a terrorist? The net result of CAPPS might then be to bully a minority (the majority of whom are law abiding), reduce civil liberties, and slightly alter the tactics of real terrorists.”
— BOB PAYNE, consultant, ERP Consultants, Asheville, N.C.