Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 probe sparks new security measure
The investigation into the disappearance of Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 uncovered one main hole in air security – the widespread lack of passport screenings by most nations.
Two passengers on board Flight 370 have been touring on stolen passports. That’s now prompted the United States so as to add screening for all passengers leaving the nation.
The U.S. screens air vacationers’ names by means of many databases, on the lookout for terrorists, wished criminals and extra.
Their passports are additionally screened by means of Interpol’s stolen and lost journey paperwork database. But till now, the United States has solely screened the passports of incoming passengers – not these leaving.
The change got here to gentle Friday throughout a congressional listening to. John Wagner of Customs and Border Patrol advised Texas Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee his company began screening passports of departing fliers after Flight 370 disappeared.
Asked through the listening to if the company would proceed this apply, Wagner replied, “Absolutely.”
“Ensuring people are properly credentialed and we know who they are is a key piece of that,” he mentioned.
Andrew Farrelly, a former director of focusing on applications at Customs and Border Protection, advised CBS News he helps the new apply of screening outgoing passengers in addition to incoming.
“I think that coupled with this information and the new abilities to act on that information, it definitely makes air travel a lot safer,” he mentioned.
Farrelly mentioned CBP debated making the change for years, however didn’t have sufficient employees or resources to trace down all of the passports that is likely to be flagged.
“There were other priorities that required attention,” he mentioned. “This tragic event of the Malaysia flight really does offer some highlights to things that you can do better.”
CBP officers advised CBS News the new passport screening occurs behind the scenes and shouldn’t delay outgoing worldwide flights.