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France to Introduce Body Scanners At Airports

In the aftermath of the recent Christmas Day bombing attempt by a Nigerian radical on a flight from Amsterdam to Detroit, people are increasingly worried about security at airports. But there is controversy about the body scanners used by some airports, criticized by some as invading privacy.

However, the technology has improved and is less invasive, thus in my opinion for the price of a just a bit of privacy, more security is well worth it. Of course some will disagree with me, but that’s the beauty of debate and democracy. Ultimately the debate is privacy v. security and the balance we must strike.

France is adding to the debate with the recent move to introduce body scanners at airports, as reported by Reuters:

France will use body scanners at some of its airports, initially to search passengers heading to the United States, Transport Secretary Dominique Bussereau told Europe 1 radio on Friday.

France said it would tighten security measures at its airports after a failed attempt to blow up a U.S. plane heading for Detroit on Christmas day.

Bussereau said the first scanners would be used “certainly for flights to the United States and the most sensitive flights to start with” and said there may be six or seven scanners at the beginning.

A scanner will be installed at Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris within the next two weeks and another at the city’s Orly airport at a later date, Eric Plaisant, director of security at France’s civil aviation authority, said.

He said he was unable to give exact dates as the authority was still discussing the scanners’ location in the airports, staff training and how to respect passengers’ privacy.

Washington has asked other countries to improve their aviation security technology after the failed attack highlighted U.S. intelligence and security faults.

Canada, the Netherlands and Britain have said they plan to use body scanners. Italy is considering them and Nigeria, the country of origin of the man who tried to blow up the Detroit-bound flight from Amsterdam, will install them.

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