In a Press Release dated August 26, 2004, the TSA announced that it will begin testing its new passenger-screening program designated “Secure Flight”. This program replaces the reviewed and rejected CAPPS II (Computer-Assisted Passenger Prescreening System) program.
Currently, the individual airlines are responsible for cross-checking passenger lists against terrorist watch lists. Under the new program, “TSA will take over responsibility for comparing Passenger Name Record (PNR) information of domestic air passengers to a greatly expanded list of known or suspected terrorists in the Terrorist Screening Center (TSC) database.” U.S. Customs and Border will continue to check passengers on international flights against the Advanced Passenger Information System (APIS).
TSA hopes that “Secure Flight will help move passengers through airport screening more quickly and reduce the number of individuals selected for secondary screening while fully protecting passengers’ privacy and civil liberties.”
Testing will begin within the next 30 to 60 days and TSA expects the testing to be completed by year’s end. Completion of testing will be followed by publication of a final Notice of Proposed Rulemaking.