ACLU Welcomes Move to Drop Commercial Data from Secure Flight Program, Announcement Comes as Critical Report by Advisory Panel is Expected

September 22, 2005 12:00 am

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WASHINGTON – The American Civil Liberties Union today welcomed a decision by the Transportation Security Administration not to include private data brokers’ reviews of commercial databases in its initial launch of the controversial Secure Flight passenger-screening program. That announcement comes as the Secure Flight working group, an internal advisory panel at the Department of Homeland Security, is expected to release a report critical of the Secure Flight program and of the agency.

The following can be attributed to Timothy Sparapani, an ACLU Legislative Counsel:

“The decision by the TSA to drop commercial data from Secure Flight is a welcome move, but TSA needs to commit publicly that it will never use files on Americans compiled by commercial data brokers. Further, the Secure Flight working group has found Secure Flight to be so undefined that it still cannot assess its privacy implications. Instead of pushing forward to implement the controversial program, TSA must first adequately address the privacy and efficacy concerns raised by experts and lawmakers alike.”

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