EU lawmakers have joined US civil liberty campaigners in criticizing a new scanner technology that allows airport security staff to see through passengers’ clothes, calling it a virtual strip search that should only be used as a last resort.
“Many travelers will consider these scanners an enormous intrusion” on their personal privacy, Philip Bradbourn, a British Conservative member of the EU assembly, said on Tuesday.
The new system, which the EU plans to authorize at the bloc’s airports, allows guards to see an outline of passengers’ bodies beneath their clothes, making it easier to detect any concealed objects.
It is already being introduced in several US airports and has been tested in other countries around the world, including EU nations such as Britain and the Netherlands. However, EU officials said it could face a ban if the 27-nation bloc does not include it in a new regulation listing acceptable airport security equipment.
Bradbourn said the technology should not be used routinely on passengers, but could be introduced when suspicions are raised.
“There may be some benefit in having body scanners in our airports, but they should be a last resort and a substitution for a strip search, not a random sample of innocent holiday-makers,” he said.
The plans have provoked concern from across the political spectrum, and many EU lawmakers issued statements ahead of Tuesday night’s debate about the matter in the European Parliament.
“The body, or nude, scanners create a three-dimensional picture which shows the passenger without clothes, including their genitals,” German Social Democrat Wolfgang Kreissl-Doerfler said.
The European Commission, says the legislation under consideration would respect safety and privacy rules, adding that passengers who objected could be offered an alternative form of security check.
Members of the European Parliament are demanding the right to vote on the scanners, which could be included in the list of authorized security equipment as a technical measure that would not require the assembly’s approval.
If the full body scanners are included in the list, each of the 27 EU nations would be free to decide if they wanted to use them.
The American Civil Liberties Union has long campaigned against use of the scanners for routine checking at US airports, saying they should only be used in place of an intrusive search when there is probable cause.
The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) caucus yesterday issued a rebuttal to former US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice, who said a fistfight in the Legislative Yuan might have been “provoked from the outside” to destabilize Taiwan. Rice made the comment in an online discussion about the AUKUS alliance of Australia, the UK and the US hosted by the Policy Exchange forum in London on Thursday. On mention of Taiwan, she was quoted by The Australian as predicting that Beijing would use paramilitary forces and acts of sabotage to destabilize the nation. “There was a fistfight in the Taiwanese parliament a few weeks ago
A Taiwanese YouTuber suspected of creating and selling deepfake porn videos featuring more than 100 politicians and influencers was on Monday released on bail after being arrested the previous day. Chu Yu-chen (朱玉宸), 26, who uses the name Xiaoyu (小玉) on YouTube, was arrested on Sunday in New Taipei City, along with two suspected accomplices, a 24-year-old YouTuber surnamed Yeh (耶), known as Shaiw Shaiw (笑笑), and a 22-year-old man Chuang (莊). The three suspects were on Monday escorted to the New Taipei District Prosecutors’ Office for further questioning on suspicion of distributing obscene videos and publicly insulting others, in contravention of
ADVANCING TECH: With revenue on target to reach US$15.4 billion, the Hsinchu-based chipmaker said it is looking to produce 3-nanometer chips later this year Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC, 台積電) yesterday announced plans to build a new plant in Japan next year to produce 22-nanometer and 28-nanometer chips in its latest effort to expand its global manufacturing footprint. The Japanese fab is to start operations in 2024, the world’s biggest contract chipmaker said, ending months of speculation. “We have received strong commitment to supporting this project from our customers and the Japanese government,” TSMC chief executive officer C.C. Wei (魏哲家) told a quarterly investors’ conference. “We believe the expansion of our global manufacturing footprint will enable us to better serve our customers’ needs and reach global talent,
KNOWN ISSUES: Fire safety issues were found in the 40-year-old building, which previously housed a theater and restaurants, in 2019, last year and May, an official said Forty-six people died and 41 were injured in a building fire that raged out of control for hours overnight in Kaohsiung, authorities said yesterday. Flames and smoke billowed from the lower floors of the 13-story Cheng Chung Cheng (城中城) building on Fubei Road in Yancheng District (鹽埕), as firefighters tried to douse the blaze from the street and aerial platforms. The death toll rose steadily through the day as rescue workers searched the combined commercial and residential building. By late afternoon, authorities said 32 bodies had been found, while a further 14 people who showed no signs of life were among 55