A new report claims that undercover officers working for the Department of Homeland Security were “able to get through TSA checkpoints with mock knives, guns and explosives … more than 70% of the time,” according to CBS News.
The primary failure, reports CBS, appears to be the luggage scanning machines, which are outdated. However, in order to replace the current machines with new CT scanners, which are much more adept at detecting weapons — specifically explosives — the TSA will need more money.
TSA administrator David Pekoske told Congress the CT technology is the most effective way to keep passengers safe, but the cost is a major hurdle.
“To invest in the CT technology requires funding above what TSA currently has,” Pekoske said.
ABC News notes that it wasn’t just the scanners that were found lacking, but that agents “identified vulnerabilities with TSA’s screener performance, screening equipment and associated procedures.”
During congressional testimony, Rep. Mike Rogers (R-AL), Chairman of the Homeland Security Subcommittee on Transportation Security, allegedly told Pekoske, who was confirmed just three months ago: “This agency that you run is broken badly, and it needs your attention.”
Multiple news outlets are reporting that the DHS offered eight recommendations to the TSA regarding how to improve security checkpoints across the country.
None of this is new. During a similar investigation two years ago, agents were able to make it through security with fake weapons 95% of the time.