Airport Photo ID Checks Useless

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In the Risks Digest Bruce Schneier discusses the flaws in the TSA’s system for checking photo IDs at airports, flaws that would allow any reasonably competent terrorist to walk onto an airplane, even if his name is on the “no fly” list and even without using a fake ID.

This might be considered an illustration of the general incompetence of the TSA, but it also illustrates the great difficulty of setting up a secure system that will foil a reasonably clever and determined attacker. It’s not something that the average political appointee or bureaucrat without special training is likely to be able to manage.