TSA launches trusted traveler pilot at four airports

Monday, October 3, 2011

YARMOUTH, Maine–The Transportation Security Administration today launched a pilot program designed to enhance security while expediting pre-flight screening for airline passengers who volunteer more personal information about themselves prior to flying.

The pilot, called PreCheck, was launched at four U.S. airports and will make intelligence-based risk assessments on passengers who voluntarily participate in the program. The four pilot sites are Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International, Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County, Dallas/Fort Worth International and Miami International airports.

“As TSA moves further away from a one-size-fits-all approach, our ultimate goal is to provide the most effective security in the most efficient way possible,” TSA Administrator John S. Pistole, said in a statement. “By learning more about travelers through information they voluntarily provide, and combining that information with our other layers of security, we can focus more resources on higher-risk and unknown passengers. This new screening system holds great potential to strengthen security while significantly enhancing the travel experience whenever possible for passengers.”

Those eligible to participate in the PreCheck pilot include certain frequent flyers from American Airlines and Delta Air Lines, as well as members of the Customs and Border Protection’s Trusted Traveler programs, including Global Entry, SENTRI, and NEXUS, who are U.S. citizens and are flying on participating airlines. If successful, TSA plans to expand the pilot to include additional airlines, as well as other airports that participate in CBP’s Global Entry program.

The TSA is in the process of testing several other new screening initiatives, including a program designed to provide positive ID verification for airline pilots and the use of expanded behavior detection techniques, in addition to the recent changes in screening procedures for children.