The Transportation Safety Administration's Secure Flight program "may not be adequately protected against unauthorized access and use or disruption," a Government Accountability Office auditor told Senate committee yesterday, according to the New York Times. The program has been long-delayed and agency chief Kip Hawley told the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science & Transportation that it will be delayed.
The program is supposed to take over from the airlines the job of checking passenger names against a "watch list." The idea is to reduce the number of cases in which people with names similar to those on the watch list are prevented from boarding planes, but civil libertarians say it would violate passengers' privacy.
The agency has been working on the program for about four years and has spent at least $140 million.
Hawley said the agency's technology office had identified many of the same problems as the GAO. "Even before the hearing, there was no target date for turning the system on," the Times reports.