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February 28, 2010

UK Govt using new ‘behavioural analysis’ security check at Heathrow

     London: The British Airports Authority (BAA) is using behavioural analysis to weed out terror suspects during security checks at the London Heathrow Airport. The airports’ operator had started an open-ended trial of the controversial techniques in January, where travelers exhibiting unusual behaviour were given a more thorough security check. The trial signals a shift in security strategy for the BAA, which has so far been focusing on finding dangerous objects. The behavioural assessment will be used in conjunction with intelligence information and new technology, like the full body scanners, to improve the safety. According to reports, security staff may look for passengers who have paid cash for business class, are travelling with no luggage on a long-haul flight or are behaving erratically at the airport. The Gordon Brown-led Government is believed to be watching the trials closely before deciding whether to apply the technique at other airports. “A number of security staff at Heathrow are undergoing training in behavioural analysis techniques, where passengers are selected if they are behaving suspiciously,” Daily Express quotes Paul Clark, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for Transport, as saying. “This training is being trialled and evaluated. We will consider its effectiveness before deciding whether it can be rolled out more widely,” he added.
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