In the News: New Regulations Aim to Reduce Terror Watch List Errors

The Department of Homeland Security has unveiled a new plan in which airline passengers will be asked to provide their full name, date of birth and gender when making reservations. The program – Secure Flight – will transmit the encrypted information to the Transportation Security Administration for checking against terror watch lists. The new regulations are intended to dramatically reduce the number of people being incorrectly identified as being on such lists. The FBI says about 400,000 individuals are on its list, but each year thousands of airline passengers not on the list are misidentified and kept off flights. The American Civil Liberties Union has welcomed the new privacy protections, but says they wouldn’t be necessary if the government didn’t make the terror list “hopelessly bloated.”

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