“The image is deleted- we are told.” -Jotworks, January 7, 2010. But the naked images from full body scanners at airports are not always deleted, certainly not immediately, as my favorite Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan recently found out at London’s Heathrow airport. After passing through an x-ray backscatter device, Khan learned that full body scanner images of his naked body had been printed out by Heathrow staff and circulated.
Only a week ago, UK Transport Secretary Lord Adonis said the full body scanner images were deleted ‘immediately’. “It is very important to stress that the images which are captured by body scanners are immediately deleted after the passenger has gone through the body scanner,” Adonis told the London Evening Standard. He stated that the airport staff who operate the full body scanner devices are fully trained and supervised. With all due respect, his head must be in the clouds if he doesn’t understand human behavior and realize that abuses of rules and laws are committed by someone somewhere in every moment at a frightening rate.
The full body scanner images clearly display human genitals, which is why children- anyone under age eighteen, were at first exempt from being scanned. Scanned naked images of children violate UK child pornography laws. The exemption was overturned. Yet, full body scanner images violate the rights of humans of any age. It was only a matter of time before a celebrity would be exposed. And that the news media would find out about it.
“Celebrities can have complete faith that celebrity news website Thirty-Mile-Zone (TMZ) will never be able to tempt a security official to sell their image so that TMZ can then upload it to the Internet for all voyeuristic eyes to behold. We will never see the headline ‘Star John Doe: Full-Body Scan Exposes Penile Implant- TMZ has Exclusive Photo!'”- Jotworks January 7, 2010. I wrote this tongue-in-cheek. We all knew that the scanners would be a problem for celebrities. Shah Rukh Khan is not likely the first to be subjected to the culpable abuse of his privacy.
Shah Rukh Khan said that full body scans are embarrassing. The body scanners produce clear images of a person’s genitals- so he found out after the fact. “I was in London recently going through the airport and these new machines have come up, the body scans. You’ve got to see them. It makes you embarrassed- if you’re not well endowed. You walk into the machine and everything- the whole outline of your body- comes out,” Khan said.
When Khan walked out of the full body scanner device, he said he saw the female airport staff with printouts. He thought the printouts were forms to fill out so he asked for them. “I said ‘give them to me’ – and you could see everything inside. So I autographed them for them,” stated Khan. The sexy actor was in London for the premiere of his new film ‘My Name is Khan’, in which he plays a man who is mistaken for a terrorist.
There is another abuse of the virtual strip search that the full body scanner performs. The person who is undergoing the scan or virtual strip is supposed to have his identity kept private. However, in the case of Shah Rukh Khan, the Heathrow employees must have known the sexy actor-hunk was about to pass through the full body scanner. That wouldn’t be too difficult since Khan is a recognizable international superstar. And with Bollywood on the rise, his star is shining hotter.
Yet, anyone- even a non-celebrity- should beware of full body scanners. They are a violation of human rights. They invade privacy and could endanger one’s health. They emit radiation. Even though the level is so-called ‘low’, continued exposure to it could be of concern to a frequent flyer.
Source: prisonplanet. Other sources are embedded.