Security theater: Some measures just for show

Thursday, September 11, 2008

It’s called “security theater:” highly visible measures that serve no genuine security purpose. Those National Guard troops you see at the airport? Generally those big guns aren’t loaded. Having to show one's ID at every turn? The 9/11 hijackers carried genuine drivers licenses, too. The Takeaway talks to the man who coined the phrase “security theater” about what makes genuinely good security and what's just for show.
Guest: Bruce Schneier, chief security technology officer for British Telecom


Mark Garrison

Comments [3]

Joe Richards

"Security theater" chosen by WNYC to commemorate anniversary of 9/11 ??? See article summaries below.
And mention this obscene WNYC segment from 9/11/08 when the next fund raiser comes around, to give WNYC the clear message that your listeners will not accept your trivializing the very real radical Islamist threat against Western civilization and America.

Ex-Officials Says Terrorism Threat Remains Real - Spencer S. Hsu 9/11/08
"The threat of a new major terrorist attack on the United States is still very real," concludes a report issued Wednesday by the bipartisan Partnership for a Secure America, co-chaired by Lee H. Hamilton, vice chairman of the 9/11 Commission, and Warren Rudman, co-chairman of a 2001 blue-ribbon commission on terrorism. A nuclear, chemical or biological weapon in the hands of terrorists was "the single greatest threat to our nation," and, "We are still dangerously vulnerable."
(Washington Post)
Al-Qaeda Is Still Gunning for the West - Sebastian Rotella
Al-Qaeda remains determined to strike on American soil, anti-terrorism officials say. But it has run up against aggressive surveillance, tough border security and a lack of extremist communities in which to operate. Instead, officials say, it appears to have focused on using Europe to hit targets such as the flights bound for the U.S. from Britain. (Los Angeles Times)

Sep. 11 2008 01:20 PM
Lisa M

Should have added to the above list the radical Islam attack on Madrid, is he forgetting Europe has had their own 9/11's? The assertion of the previous guest that it'a all about conservative politics when the gov't announced threat levels and promises to not forget what happened at the Pentagon, NYC, Pennsylvania and passengers on 3 airplanes on 9/11, is absurd. WE citizens of the US, especially the NY-metro area will never forget, and do not believe threats of terrorism are just hype.

Sep. 11 2008 10:37 AM
Lisa M

I couln't disagree more with this so-called "security expert" on the threats to the US, and actual terroristic attacks perfomed by radical Islam or Al Quaida-related on other countries since 9-11/-01! Has he (or have "WE")forgotten about the attacks that WERE carried out post-9/11 in London, India, Bali,etc. ... there are probably more successful attacks as well as thwarted ones we have already forgotten about. I do blame the Clinton Admin for doing little to nothing to respond to their knowledge of the actual culprits in the '93 WTC Bombing, and not being serious about capturing or killing Bin Laden when they were able to. When Clinton pointed his finger at reporter (Chris Mattews?) saying about Pres Bush, "he had 8 months," Clinton knew damn well, HE had 8 YEARS!

Sep. 11 2008 10:00 AM

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