DALLAS - The Transportation Security Administration unveiled new body scan technology that they hope will help ease travelers' concerns Friday at the Dallas/Fort Worth International airport.
The new scanners, which will be installed in 40 airports over the next several months, will detect potential threat items but will produce a generic, computerized outline of the person's body.
The body imaging machines used since last fall have been heavily criticized for showing images of naked bodies. The images were viewed by a TSA screener in a separate room, leading to concerns that the images could be saved and disseminated.
Under the new system, the images are displayed on a screen that is visible to travelers.
The added security is new software that is upgraded into the 14 Advanced Imaging machines currently at use at D/FW. Automatic target recognition (ATR) highlights areas on a person's body where the machine targets a potential threat. The monitor gives an "OK" on a green screen when people are cleared to proceed.
Those who the machine flags are then checked by an agent.
"With the installation of the new software, we are able to strengthen privacy protections for passengers without compromising the safety and security of the traveling public." said Mike Donnelly, Department of Federal Security.
Testing for the new software began in the fall of 2010.
Anyone flying out of the five terminals of D/FW Airport may still be subject to the controversial body pat-downs.