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ATLANTA (AP) — A select group of travelers may find it easier Tuesday getting through security checkpoints at four major U.S. airports in return for voluntarily providing more personal information to the federal government as part of a new pilot program.
The “PreCheck” program is the first big attempt by President Barack Obama’s administration to move away from a one-size-fits-all security approach and toward a more risk-based, intelligence-driven model. It comes after complaints about full-body pat downs and intensive searches of children and the elderly.
“By learning more about travelers through information they voluntarily provide, and combining that information with our other layers of security, we can focus more resources on higher-risk and unknown passengers,” John Pistole, head of the U.S. Transportation Security Administration, said in prepared remarks before the official announcement.
The voluntary test program covers travelers enrolled in Delta Air Lines’ frequent-flier program or three other government-trusted traveler programs — called Global Entry, NEXUS and SENTRI — involving people who travel regularly through Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International and Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County airports. It also covers selected travelers enrolled in American Airlines’ frequent-flier program, or the three other government programs, who travel regularly through Miami International and Dallas-Fort Worth International airports.