It is amazing how time can flow in the federal government. The TSA Screening Management SOP document that I posted about yesterday had been online since March. Sure, apparently not many people knew about it and even fewer knew that it actually contained the content that was assumed by TSA’s legal department to be redacted. Once that was noticed, however, the proverbial cat was out of the bag. Apparently having the document online actually wasn’t that big a deal. Properly redacted it was no longer considered SSI and was useful for the purpose of its original publishing – to allow contractors to bid on providing screening services for airports in Montana.
But once the lack of redaction was exposed the gears of government started to turn with great speed. Just hours after the reports started circulating on the internet the file was gone. From a Department of Commerce website. On a Sunday evening.
Who says that the government is glacial?
Seriously, though, apparently they are concerned about the general public knowing the correct procedure for TSOs washing the table and changing gloves following a positive reading on the ETD machine. Or the frequency with which the black-light and loupe are supposed to be used in the screening process (here’s a hint: it is WAY higher than what I’ve ever experienced at an airport). Or the list of folks exempt from the selectee screening even if their boarding pass is noted as such? Actually that last one is a pretty good read (Section 4.3.15 (B)).
The good news is that plenty of people have copies of the document, including WikiLeaks.org and Cryptome.org. The version available from the latter is actually quite nice since it has the black boxes removed for easier reading. So the original link I shared is dead but there are plenty of other sources out there.
I’ve put in a call to the Office of Public Affairs for a comment on the release and have thus far been stonewalled. I’m planning on calling back later this afternoon in an effort to get something – anything – from them. We’ll see how that goes.
Never miss another post: Sign up for email alerts and get only the content you want direct to your inbox.