TSA Spends $336K on iPad App to Ensure Random, Non-Discriminatory Security Lines

Tim Dionisopoulos | April 4, 2016
Font Size

Get in line? Apparently, you need an app for that.

The TSA spent $336,000 on an iPad app to ensure the way they choose passengers for security lines is random and non-discriminatory, a new report reveals.

A write-up on TheNextWeb.com states a FOIA request returned to a curious developer this month reveals the iPad application cost $336,414.59 to create.

IBM apparently won the bid to make the app, which boils down to being an elaborate random number generator.

In a 2014 report, Bloomberg states the app makes it difficult for terrorists to decipher any patterns to determine who goes into which PreCheck lane.

The TSA uses software to randomly choose whether travelers in the PreCheck lanes go left or right, making it harder for potential terrorists to detect any patterns. The randomization also helps to prevent accusations of racial or other profiling. The program is used at peak travel times when queues increase, such as early morning and evening. The agency says PreCheck lanes can screen 300 people per hour, about twice the number at its regular lanes.

Leave it to the government to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to build an application to create lines, something the average six year old returning from recess can accomplish with ease.