Good news, frequent fliers: Transportation Security Administration screening officials will no longer be able to see your graphically naked body when you fly.
The TSA announced today (January 18) that it has ended its contract with OSI Systems Inc.’s Rapiscan Systems, which provides the fairly invasive and highly controversial backscatter body scanners to airports.
Citing privacy concerns, the TSA previously requested that Rapiscan create software that would replace the naked image of a passenger generated by the machines with a more generic avatar.
After Rapiscan told the TSA it wouldn't be able to deliver such software until 2014, the TSA terminated its contract with the company and announced it would be removing all 174 body scanners currently in use in U.S. airports.
However, for those travellers who get creeped out about patdowns and human contact in general, not all is lost. The TSA will still be using body scanners provided by L-3 Communications Holdings, which builds scanners that use radio waves to identify concealed objects on a generic body image.