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Diving into the previously undisclosed TSA program that monitors unaware passengers




A patch is seen on the jacket of a Transportation Security Administration official at Miami International Airport on October 24, 2017 in Miami, Florida.
A patch is seen on the jacket of a Transportation Security Administration official at Miami International Airport on October 24, 2017 in Miami, Florida.
Joe Raedle/Getty Images

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Federal air marshals are tracking U.S. citizens not suspected of a crime or on any terrorist watch list, according to The Boston Globe and confirmed by other news sources.

Under the program, called ‘Quiet Skies,’ thousands of unsuspecting American travelers have been surveilled by teams of armed, undercover air marshals both in airports and on flights. They track and document the passenger’s behaviors, like whether they use a computer, sleep on the flight or have a “cold penetrating stare.”

Some air marshals have said they feel like it’s a time-consuming and costly program that leads them to watch travelers who appear to pose no real threat – especially since the program specifically targets individuals who “are not under investigation by any agency and are not in the Terrorist Screening Data Base,” according to a March TSA bulletin referenced in The Boston Globe article.

How do you feel about the program? Call us at 866-893-5722.

Guests:

Kip Hawley, former director of the Transportation Security Administration (2005-2009) and co-author of the book “Permanent Emergency: Inside the TSA and the Fight for the Future of American Security” (St. Martin’s Griffin, 2013); he tweets @kiphawley

Jeramie D. Scott, national security counsel and director of the Domestic Surveillance Project at the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) in DC; he tweets @JeramieScott