TSA Pre✓™ Program
Image Source: http://www.tsa.gov/tsa-precheck

Changes to the TSA Pre✓™ Program

As of 20 December 2013, the TSA Pre✓™ Program now requires participating service members to provide their DoD ID number as the “Known Traveller Number” when booking any reservations for themselves or family members. Information on how to update your information with the program is below. Though there are many pros to this program, there are a few cons you may not have considered.

The TSA Pre✓™ Program is “open to active Service members, Reservists, National Guardsmen, and members of the Coast Guard, who have a valid Common Access Card (CAC).” There are many pros to the program, such as the convenience of being allowed to keep on one’s shoes, belt, and light jacket and leaving laptops and 3-1-1 compliant liquids inside one’s carry-on luggage during screening. Pre✓™ participants can also use the designated security lanes to process more quickly through security checkpoints.

If you would like additional information on the TSA Pre✓™ Program or to update your “Known Traveller Number” in order to continue to participate in the program, please use the resources provided at the end of this blog.

Though this relaxation of security is commendable and in 99.9% of cases a well-deserved gesture, in recognition presumably of the tight and often stressful timelines and travel itineraries of service members and for the trustworthiness and stalwart service of this sector of society, I challenge you to consider the implications of this security-abatement prior to participating.

Whether it is at an airport, a school, a mall, a public or government building, or involving intelligence information, it only takes one person or one technology breach to wreak havoc. We have seen examples of this on the news from all sectors of society and in most cases those who knew the perpetrator best described the event as unexpected or out of character.

I choose to not participate in this program, even though I know that I am a safe bet and would certainly enjoy a less rigorous security screening. I realize my non-participation has no affect on the system, but I question any type of circumvention of security protocols at airports, where the dangerous-intentions of one can dramatically affect the wellbeing of others. I have no problem taking my time in a security line because I feel more confident afterwards that I and my fellow passengers have been thoroughly screened and that to the best of our capability, I am safe.

I appreciate the gesture and consideration TSA has extended to my family with this Pre✓™ Program. I am not saying that we should expect or even anticipate that the next airport incident will come from those persons allowed to participate in the TSA Pre✓™ Program. I am saying that any circumvention of security measures implicates all of us.


Source: “TSA Pre✓™ Program”. 11/01/2013. Defense Travel Management Office.
Cover image source: http://www.tsa.gov/tsa-precheck

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