Aviation Security: 9/11 Anniversary Observations on TSA's Progress and Challenges in Strengthening Aviation Security, Statement of Stephen M. Lord, Director Homeland Security and Justice Issues, Testimony Before the Subcommittee on Transportation Security, Committee on Homeland Security, House of Representatives   [open pdf - 283KB]

From the Highlights: "Securing commercial aviation operations remains a daunting task, with hundreds of airports, thousands of aircraft, and thousands of flights daily carrying millions of passengers and pieces of carry-on and checked baggage. The attempted terrorist bombing of Northwest flight 253 on December 25, 2009, and the October 2010 discovery of explosive devices in air cargo packages on an all-cargo aircraft bound for the United States from Yemen highlight the continuing need for effective passenger, cargo, and baggage screening. This statement discusses actions TSA [Transportation Security Administration] has taken to (1) validate the scientific basis of its behavior-based passenger screening program (the Screening of Passengers by Observation Techniques, or SPOT); (2) strengthen the security of inbound air cargo (3) acquire checked baggage screening technology in accordance with established guidance; and (4) vet foreign nationals training at U.S. flight schools. This statement is based on GAO's [Government Accountability Office] work issued from September 2009 through July 2012, and includes selected updates on air cargo screening conducted from July through September 2012. For the selected updates, GAO interviewed TSA officials. […] GAO is not making any new recommendations. GAO has previously recommended that TSA take actions to improve aviation security. In general, TSA concurred with the recommendations, and is taking actions to address them."

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Government Accountability Office: http://www.gao.gov/
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