Full Body Scanners Seem to Be Fraught with Scandals

The introduction of full body scanners at British airports became a controversial issue. The new mashines could be introduced at Heathrow Airport in recent future.

Campaigners have claimed the images taken by the scanners of a new type could breach legislation making it illegal to create indecent images of children, as well as threatening the privacy of other passengers.

The technology is expected to be introduced at Heathrow and other hubs within weeks after Prime Minister Gordon Brown said it was "essential" to prevent a new terrorist threat.

Terri Dowty, of civil rights group Action On Rights For Children, told reporters that the scanners could breach the Protection of Children Act 1978, under which it is illegal to create an indecent image or a "pseudo-image" of a child.

Ms Dowty added that there was an exemption in the 1978 law to cover the "prevention and detection of crime", but the purpose had to be more specific than the security measures being proposed by the Government.

Simon Davies of human rights campaigner Privacy International also said he feared scans of celebrities or of people with unusual body profiles could prove an "irresistible pull" for some employees, leading to their potential publication on the internet.

A Department for Transport spokesman said: "We understand the concerns expressed about privacy in relation to the deployment of body scanners.

"It is vital staff are properly trained and we are developing a code of practice to ensure these concerns are properly taken into account.

"Existing safeguards also mean those operating scanners are separated from the device, so unable to see the person to whom the image relates, and these anonymous images are deleted immediately."

Thus the  Government assures that a code of practice for body scanner operators, which is being developed now, will help to calm down the public fears.

The Press Association has contributed to the report.

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