In a massive security breach, the Transportation Security Agency (TSA) inadvertently posted online its airport screening procedures manual, including some of the most closely guarded secrets regarding special rules for diplomats and CIA and law enforcement officers.
Perhaps not the kind of “open government” the White House has in mind. In all seriousness, though: The most sensitive parts of the document include details on how many bags are searched for explosives, which nationalities are subject to extra scrutiny, and other details of airport security that really should remain secret.
The agency posted a response on its own blog, saying that it plans to “conduct a full review” of the breach.
The version of the document that was posted was neither implemented nor issued to the workforce. In fact, there have been six newer versions of the document since this version was drafted. Standard Operating Procedures change regularly as intelligence provides information on new threats and we find better ways improve security.
The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs committee, coincidentally, is holding a hearing tomorrow called “Stopping Terrorist Travel.” You can be sure the TSA breach will become a big part of that hearing.