Government Incompetence Update: TSA Cannot Verify Employees’ Criminal Histories

Disclosure: TSA Cannot Verify Employees’ Criminal Histories – Washington Free Beacon

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Government oversight officials informed Congress on Wednesday that the Transportation Security Administration continues to operate in disarray, failing to record basic security details for thousands of employees and not tracking official IDs and badges that allow access to the most sensitive areas of an airport.

Lawmakers described the security agency as operating “in chaos” and expressed frustration with Obama administration officials as they informed the House Oversight Committee about a range of security shortfalls that continue to endanger the nation’s 450 commercial airports.

TSA’s inability to properly screen and track employees has been well documented for years. However, the administration has failed to enact multiple reforms aimed at tightening security and making it more efficient, lawmakers said.

TSA still cannot verify their employees’ criminal histories and immigration statuses, according to disclosures made by the Department of Homeland Security inspector general.

“Even 15 years” since the 9/11 terror attacks, “we still see a system that has not complied with the laws we have passed multiple times… and we see failures,” said Rep. John Mica (R., Fla.), chair of the House Transportation Subcommittee.

Following the discovery last year of 73 aviation employees who also were listed on the nation’s terror watch list, TSA has struggled to implement reforms aimed to remedy these security gaps, Mica said.

“TSA employees are not properly vetted,” he said. “We’ve found that tens of thousands of incomplete records are even lacking full names. They [TSA] had 14,000 immigrants listed in the database that did not have alien registration numbers and 75,000 of these records lacked passport numbers. This is not acceptable.”

Officials additionally could not account for “hundreds and thousands of IDs” that had gone missing, including TSA security badges, airport identity badges, and officer identification.

“Everything you can imagine stolen, or missing, or unaccounted for,” Mica said. “Here we are in 2016, 15 years after 9/11, and we don’t know who’s going in and who’s going out. There’s no way to ensure it.”

John Roth, the Department of Homeland Security inspector general, provided a list of security flaws and inefficiencies in the TSA’s employee screening process.

In addition to still not having full access to the U.S. terror watch list, TSA is incapable of verifying employees’ criminal records.

“TSA is considerably challenged when it comes to verifying workers’ criminal histories and immigration status,” Roth said. “TSA does not recurrently vet airport workers’ criminal histories after they are initially cleared to work, but rely on individuals to self-report disqualifying crimes.”

Most employees do not follow this policy, he said.

“TSA cannot systematically determine whether individuals have been convicted of disqualifying crimes,” Roth said, noting that commercial airports also do not hold onto these records. “Due to the large workload involved, this inspection process looked at as few as one percent of all aviation workers applications.”

Additionally, the records TSA uses for vetting individuals is “not reliable, as it contains incomplete or inaccurate data,” Roth said.

At least 87,000 active aviation workers, or 10 percent of the total workforce, do not have social security numbers listed in their records, according to Roth.

An additional 75,000 active employee credentials listed the worker as a non-U.S. citizen but did not include passport numbers. Of that number, 14,000 workers also did not list an alien registration number, meaning they could potentially be undocumented.

“TSA did not have appropriate checks in place to reject records from such vetting,” Roth said. “Without complete and accurate info TSA risked credentialing and providing unescorted access to secure airport areas for a worker who could potentially harm the nation’s air transportation system.”

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Female TSA Worker Rigged Body Scanner On ‘Attractive’ Male Passengers So Her Male Colleague Could Grope Them

New Security Video Captures The Shocking Moment Female TSA Worker Rigged Body Scanner On ‘Attractive’ Male Passengers So Her Male Colleague Could Grope Them – Daily Mail

Disturbing security footage has emerged showing the moment a female TSA worker rigged an airport scanning machine so that her male co-worker could fondle male passengers’ genitals.

Yasmeen Shafi, 22, was allegedly alerted by her colleague, Ty Spicha, 27, every time a man he found attractive walked up to the security checkpoint at Denver International Airport in Colorado.

In an elaborate plot, Shafi then reportedly manipulated the body scanner so that the male was identified as a female – causing the machine to detect an anomaly in the passenger’s genital area.

This, in turn, permitted Spicha to perform a pat-down on the man.

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Elaborate plot: Yasmeen Shafi (far left), 22, watches her colleague, Ty Spicha (second right), 27, approach an attractive man after she allegedly manipulated the body scanner at Colorado’s Denver International Airport

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‘Groping’: Spicha then starts to pat down the man , who was wrongly identified as a female so the machine would detect an anomaly in his genital area. He appears to run his hand over the man’s thigh and genitals

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Another go: On the same day, Spicha apparently touches the genitals of another attractive male passenger

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Fired: Shafi (right) and Spicha (left) have now been fired from the TSA – which deems their actions ‘shocking and egregious’ – after one of their co-workers tipped off the organization to the alleged scanner scheme

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The new video footage, captured on airport security and obtained this week by CBS Denver station KCNC, shows Spicha approaching male passengers who have been wrongly identified as females.

Dressed in his official Transportation Security Administration (TSA) uniform and a pair of blue gloves, he then appears to grope the fliers by running his hands over their genitals and buttocks.

This sort of contact is in violation of TSA policy.

Shafi, meanwhile, stands beside the security machine, watching the inappropriate pat-downs.

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The footage was filmed earlier this year – and apparently captures just several of many incidents.

Shafi and Spicha have now been fired from the TSA – which deems their actions ‘shocking and egregious’ – after one of their co-workers tipped off the organization to the scanner scheme.

However, no criminal charges have been filed against the duo because no alleged victims have yet been confirmed by officials – including the men who can be seen in the newly-released footage.

In an interview with the TSA, Shafi admitted to participating in the plot, according to CBS4.

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Shocking: The new video footage, which was captured on airport security and obtained this week by CBS’s Denver station KCNC , shows Spicha approaching one male passenger and caressing his buttocks (above)

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Inappropriate: In another blurry shot, the TSA employee appears to grope a man’s behind at the checkpoint

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Deliberate error: No criminal charges have been filed against Shafi and Spicha . Above, Shafi allegedly manipulated the scanner so it believed males were females – and therefore, identified genital anomalies

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She said the scheme had involved at least 11 passengers over 2014 and 2015, it is reported.

A Denver Police Department report seen by Daily Mail Online describes Shafi and Spicha’s plot.

‘When a male he [Spicha] finds attractive comes to be screened by the scanning machine, he will alert another TSA screener to indicate to the scanning computer that the party being screened is female,’ it reads.

‘When the screener does this, the scanning machine will indicate an anomaly in the genital area.’

The anonymous tip by a co-worker was apparently made to the TSA in November last year.

But despite this, the agency only launched an investigation in February.

A TSA supervisor told police that he saw Spicha ‘give a signal’ to Shafi.

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Admission: In an interview with the TSA, Shafi (seen with a male companion in a Myspace snap) apparently admitted to participating in the plot. She said the scheme had involved at least 11 passengers, it is reported

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Security: Passengers are pictured undergoing full body scans by TSA agents at Denver International Airport in this file picture. The TSA described Spicha and Shafi’s reported actions as ‘egregious and intolerable’

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Then, after Shafi manipulated the scanner, Spicha would ‘conduct a pat down of the passenger’s front groin and buttocks area with the palms of his hands… contradictory to TSA searching policy’.

Earlier this year, the TSA told Daily Mail Online: ‘These alleged acts are egregious and intolerable.

‘TSA has removed the two officers from the agency. All allegations of misconduct are thoroughly investigated by the agency. And when substantiated, employees are held accountable.’

The newly-released security footage comes just a week after TSA agent Maxie Oquendo allegedly groped a 21-year-old female foreign exchange student at LaGuardia Airport in New York City.

Oquendo is facing sexual abuse and harassment charges over the alleged bathroom incident.

He has also been fired from the TSA.

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Stunning Incompetence: Over 70 Workers Hired By TSA Were On Terrorism Watchlists

70+ Workers Hired By TSA Were On Terrorism Watchlists – Truth Revolt

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The much-beleaguered Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is facing yet another crisis – its second in two weeks – after a new report from the inspector general’s office at the Department of Homeland Security discovered that the agency did not adequately screen 73 airport workers who had been placed on terrorism-related watch lists.

Far from inspiring confidence, the inspector general’s report portrays the TSA as being at the mercy of complex regulations, a deficit of information from other agencies, and bureaucratic entanglements that prevented the agency from verifying that the information they received on aviation workers was accurate.

Under the heading “What We Found” the report describes:

TSA’s multi-layered process to vet aviation workers for potential links to terrorism was generally effective… However, our testing showed that TSA did not identify 73 individuals with terrorism-related category codes because TSA is not authorized to receive all terrorism-related information under current interagency watchlisting policy.

In addition to not being aware that 73 airport employees were on terrorism watch lists, the report also found that the TSA is also lacking accurate information about the criminal history and legal status of other employees who work in restricted areas.

The report explains:

TSA had less effective controls in place for ensuring that aviation workers 1) had not committed crimes that would disqualify them from having unescorted access to secure airport areas, and 2) had lawful status and were authorized to work in the United States. In general, TSA relied on airport operators to perform criminal history and work authorization checks, but had limited oversight over these commercial entities. Thus, TSA lacked assurance that it properly vetted all credential applications.

The TSA apparently wasn’t even able to fully verify the identities of their employees because records sometimes omitted a candidate’s full name or social security number.

Further, thousands of records used for vetting workers contained potentially incomplete or inaccurate data, such as an initial for a first name and missing social security numbers. TSA did not have appropriate edit checks in place to reject such records from vetting.

This latest outrage comes on the heels of an internal investigation released last week by the Department of Homeland Security which revealed that the TSA failed to detect banned weapons or imitation explosives 95% at America’s most highly-trafficked airports. This monumental failure rate led to the ouster of the TSA’s acting chief, Melvin Carraway.

In an official response to the report, the TSA promised to screen workers against a more inclusive database by the end of 2015.

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Stunning Incompetence: TSA Screeners Fail 95 Percent Of Airport Security Tests (Video)

Total Fail: TSA Doesn’t Stop 95 Percent Of Potential Terror Attacks In Tests – Townhall

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Good news, America. All of the tax money you’ve given to the Transportation “Security” Administration seems to have been a waste. All of those grope sessions you’ve endured? Worthless. All of those naked photos random “agents” saw of you? Just pure entertainment (but really).

According to a new Homeland Security report, the TSA failed to stop 95 percent of potential terror attacks at major airports. ABC News has the story (bolding is mine):

An internal investigation of the Transportation Security Administration revealed security failures at dozens of the nation’s busiest airports, where undercover investigators were able to smuggle mock explosives or banned weapons through checkpoints in 95 percent of trials, ABC News has learned.

The series of tests were conducted by Homeland Security Red Teams who pose as passengers, setting out to beat the system.

According to officials briefed on the results of a recent Homeland Security Inspector General’s report, TSA agents failed 67 out of 70 tests, with Red Team members repeatedly able to get potential weapons through checkpoints.

In one test an undercover agent was stopped after setting off an alarm at a magnetometer, but TSA screeners failed to detect a fake explosive device that was taped to his back during a follow-on pat down.

The TSA receives $8 billion per year in funding. Just two weeks ago, DHS Inspector General John Roth testified in front of Congress about concerns the agency wasn’t fulfilling it’s original mission.

“Unfortunately, although nearly 14 years have passed since TSA’s inception, we remain deeply concerned about its ability to execute its mission,” Roth said. “Since 2014 we have published more than 115 audit and inspector reports about TSA’s programs and operations. We’ve issued hundreds of recommendations to attempt to improve TSA’s efficiency and effectiveness. We have conducted a series of covert penetration tests, essentially testing TSA’s ability to stop us from bringing in simulated explosives and weapons through checkpoints, as well as testing whether we could enter secure areas through other means.”

Earlier this month, Judicial Watch released documents revealing horrifying details of alleged sexual assaults from TSA agents at airports around the country.

April 7, 2013, at Denver International Airport:

At approximately 14:10 hours on the South Checkpoint, near lane 4 a passenger complained that he sustained an injury resulting from the aggressive actions of the the [sic] TSO [Transportation Security Officer] conducting a pat down search… The passenger stated during the pat-down search he was struck very hard in the groin area, which caused him pain to his left testical [sic].

October 19, 2013, “TSA Contact Center Record,” Los Angeles Airport:

She [TSA agent] then placed full palms squarely on my breasts and then moved around my breasts again. She then placed both palms against my breasts and I was shocked, humiliated, alarmed and assaulted and said ‘Stop! What are you doing? That’s not ok.’… I reported this to TSA Supervisor… She got the manager [redacted] and he said he would look at the video and TSA would send me a letter but it would not tell me the resolution and that I did not have a right to view the video… I will not be sexually assaulted at the airport. As a taxpayer, I pay for the TSA.”

July 5, 2013, “TSA Contact Center Record,” O’Hare Airport:

The female TSO then proceeded to roughly feel of [sic] her breast including her nipples. The TSO didn’t go under her arms or along her sides. She indicated that she did not receive a proper pat down. The search was limited to her breast… Two other individuals came over to where the supervisor and gentleman were and they began laughing. The caller indicated that the incident was not the business of the other two officers and not a show for them. The caller indicated that even the Supervisor, along with the others, began to roar with laughter.

July 6, 2013, “TSA Contact Center Record,” O’Hare Airport:

Caller indicates that her mother feels as though she was singled out because she was a breast cancer survivor and the caller feels as though this is extremely discriminatory. Caller indicates that the breast is an extremely intimate place that should not be rubbed in the manner that it was. Caller expressed that her mother feels extremely violated and the caller feels that being violated in this manner is on the same level as rape. Caller has indicated that her mother will never travel again because of the pat down that she received.

July 29, 2013, “To/From Memo,” O’Hare Airport:

The person began to tell me how TSO [redacted] stuck his hands down his pants and grabbed the top of his penis and placed his fingers in his butt crack… The person was sure that he was violated and wanted to talk to a supervisor… He said he is going to file a police report with Chicago Police Department and file a lawsuit against TSA and Officer [redacted] and walked away.”

If this video doesn’t enrage you, especially after this news, I don’t know what will.

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Gay TSA Agents At Denver International Airport Fired After Conspiring To Grope Men’s Genitals

Two TSA Agents Fired After Conspiring To Grope Men’s Genitals – Mediaite

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According to a new investigative report from CBS4, two TSA screeners have been fired from their jobs at Denver International Airport after one of them admitted to manipulating the system to allow one of them to grope the genitals of male passengers he found attractive. The alleged incidents occurred about a dozen times over the past year.

“He related that when a male he finds attractive comes to be screened by the scanning machine he will alert another TSA screener to indicate to the scanning computer that the party being screened is a female,” a law enforcement report reads. “When the screener does this, the scanning machine will indicate an anomaly in the genital area and this allows (the male TSA screener) to conduct a pat-down search of that area.”

The TSA first learned of the scheme last November, but did not take action until months later when a supervisor caught the employees in the act. When confronted, the female agent “admitted that she has done this for (the male TSA officer) at least 10 other times” and “knew that doing so would allow (the male TSA officer) to perform a pat down on a male passenger that (the male TSA screener) found attractive.”

“These alleged acts are egregious and intolerable,” a TSA spokesperson said in a statement. “TSA has removed the two officers from the agency. All allegations of misconduct are thoroughly investigated by the agency. And when substantiated, employees are held accountable.”

Notably, CBS requested surveillance video of the known groping incident for its report but was denied.

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Newest Air-Travel Threat: Sock Monkey Puppets And Their Tiny, Toy Guns

TSA Confiscates Sock Monkey Puppet’s Toy Pistol – Real Clear Politics

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Even sock monkeys aren’t allowed to fly with toy pistols these days! A Transportation Security Administration agent at Lambert-St. Louis Airport confiscated the toy gun belonging to “Rooster Monkburn” the cowboy sock monkey last week because of the government’s no-weapons on flights policy.

“Rooster Monkburn,” who is billed as a “take-off on the John Wayne character “Rooster Cogburn” from the 1969 western “True Grit,” is one of the many sock monkeys owned by Phyllis May of Redmond, Wash. May runs a small business which sells unique sock monkey dolls, and was flying from St. Louis to Sea-Tac airport and had a couple of monkeys and sewing supplies packed away in her carry-on bag.

She told KING-TV, the local NBC affiliate, that she was ”appalled and shocked and embarrassed all at the same time” over the incident.

May and her husband were going through the screening process at the airport when she noticed that one of her bags was missing. A TSA agent had taken it off the line for inspection, and it was when the agent searched the bag and the sowing supplies she spotted the two-inch long pistol.

“She said ‘this is a gun,’” May told the station. “I said no, it’s not a gun it’s a prop for my monkey.”

The TSA agent then told May that she would have to confiscate the gun and was supposed to call police on May, as the agent believed someone wouldn’t know if it “was real or not” if it was held up to one’s neck.

“I said well go ahead,” May continued. “And I said really? You’re kidding me right, and she said no it looks like a gun.”

At least May has been able to keep a sense of humor about the debacle.

“Rooster Monkburn has been disarmed so I’m sure everyone on the plane was safe,” she said. “I understand she was doing her job but at some point doesn’t common sense prevail?”

All turned out OK in the end, as the agent ended up not calling the police and May was able to get her other sowing supplies back.

Click HERE For Rest Of Story

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TSA Spent $900M On Behavior Detection Officers Who Detected 0 Terrorists

TSA Spent $900 Million On Behavior Detection Officers Who Detected 0 Terrorists – CNS

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) spent approximately $900 million over the last 5 years for behavior detection officers to identify high-risk passengers but, so far, according to the General Accountability Office (GAO), only 0.59% of the passengers flagged were arrested and among those not one was charged with terrorism – zero.

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In 2003, the TSA started testing its Screening of Passengers by Observation Technique (SPOT) program, which was then fully deployed in 2007. About 3,000 behavior detection officers (BDO) “had been deployed to 176 of the more than 450 TSA-regulated airports in the United States” by fiscal year 2012 (Oct. 1, 2011 – Sept. 30, 2012), according to the GAO.

Those BDO officers are trained to “identify passenger behaviors indicative of stress, fear, or deception and refer passengers” and their baggage for additional screening, reported the GAO in its Nov. 8, 2013 report, Aviation Security: TSA Should Limit Future Funding for Behavior Detection Activities.

Since 2007, the TSA has spent approximately $900 million on the SPOT program, said the GAO.

During the SPOT screening, the TSA’s behavior detection officers are supposed to look for and identify “high-risk passengers based on behavioral indicators that indicate mal-intent,” said the GAO. The BDOs can refer the passengers to a law enforcement officer (LEO) for further investigation. From there, if warranted, a passenger (or passengers) can be arrested.

In a statement for the Subcommittee on Transportation Security, Stephen M. Lord, the director of homeland security and justice issues at the GAO, said that in fiscal years 2011 and 2012, for the 49 airports the GAO analyzed, there were 61,000 SPOT referrals, meaning that many passengers apparently displayed “behavioral indicators that indicate mal-intent.”

From that number, 8,700 (13.6%) were referred to a LEO. And from those LEO referrals, 365 (4%) “resulted in an arrest,” said the GAO.

That 4% of 61,000 SPOT referrals is 0.59%. In other words, for the SPOT referrals, 99.41% were not arrested. For the 0.59%, none were arrested for “terrorism.”

For that 0.59% arrested, the GAO stated the following in a footnote: “The SPOT database identifies six reasons for arrest, including (1) fraudulent documents, (2) illegal alien, (3) other, (4) outstanding warrants, (5) suspected drugs, and (6) undeclared currency.”

CNSNews.com asked Director Lord if it were accurate to report that of those 365 persons arrested, not one was arrested for “terrorism”? Lord answered by e-mail: “This is accurate for the arrests but please see footnote 98 and 99 on page 45 of the full report (GAO-14-159) as TSA believes that some of these referrals to law enforcement might be related to terrorism but has no supporting documentation or system to track the basis for these referrals.”

Footnote 98 says: “TSA was unable to provide documentation to support the number of referrals that were forwarded to law enforcement for further investigation for potential ties to terrorism.”

In his statement, Director Lord said, as explained in the November 2013 report, “TSA cannot demonstrate the effectiveness of its behavior detection activities, and available evidence does not support whether behavioral indicators can be used to identify threats to aviation security.”

The report concluded by recommending that “TSA limit future funding for its behavior detection activities,” but “DHS did not concur with our recommendation.”

Click HERE For Rest Of Story

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