Basic steps to tighten airport security
When will the government implement the necessary protective security measures to minimise the risk of a terrorist attack on civil aviation, and require airlines to assure the travelling public as to who and what is flying on their aircraft.
Anyone at our city and regional airports can board a domestic aircraft without ever producing identification. Simply check in online or at an electronic kiosk (including checked baggage), obtain your boarding pass, pass through security screening, and proceed to the boarding gate then onto the aircraft! Or, simply hand your boarding pass to one of the thousands of people in the sterile area, many of whom are not flying.
You, and your ticket and baggage, are never matched.
The bottom line is that our domestic carriers cannot guarantee who or what is travelling in their aircraft.
There are six basis steps to improving aviation security that should be implemented at all domestic airports immediately:
•Automated passenger profiling from the point of ticket purchase (national database interfaced with select government agencies and all airlines).
•Ticket-passenger verification (photo ID) prior to screening – only flying passengers permitted to proceed to the sterile concourse area.
• Scalable risk-based security screening (not everyone presents the same risk) incorporating automated full body scanning.
• Secondary ticket/passenger verification (photo ID) at the boarding gate.
• Replace the low-paid private security personnel working at our airports with a competent and highly motivated government aviation security force forming part of our border protection force. We do this for customs and quarantine inspection, why not security?
• Replace the Aviation Security Identification Card issued to employees, concessionaires and contractors working at our airports with biometric access control and ID –start tracking the person, not the card.
Anything less is simply a cost-driven politically expedient approach to our safety.
Mike Carmody, Former chief of security, Sydney Airport, Forde, ACT
Reported by the Australian Financial Review on 1 August 2017.