Times have been difficult for the public relations department of the TSA. A story was released on CNN describing the MMW imaging system being introduced as a new security measure. Included in the CNN story was an image as the TSA screener would see.
This image was considerably more graphic than the one the TSA has been using to assure everyone that there was nothing improper going on with the imaging system, that this was not an electronic strip search, that the images were "family safe" and could be used "on the cover of Reader's Digest."
Scanner Images - NSFW
The image on the left is the one provided by the TSA. The image on the right is the one provided by CNN. The only change to the image is to make the CNN image larger to be of comparable size to the TSA image - meaning that even when smaller the CNN image showed considerably more detail than the TSA wanted the American public to know about.
The TSA spokespeople assure the traveling public that the capability of the computers to store those images has been disabled. As any technical person knows, that the capability exists means that it can be reenabled at any time with no difficulty. The assurance that the capability is currently turned off offers no reassurance to anyone who understands how computers work. This capability is turned off as long as the public is worried, and can be turned on at any time.
Because the images were so graphic, a major concern was whether or not children will be subjected to these searches. As it turns out, Children will be screened, although any informed parent may choose to opt their child out of MMW screening to opt for a frisking instead. Any child old enough to stand unassisted with hands raised will be a possible sbject for this screening.
This makes the TSA the world's foremost child pornographer. Every single TSO who works around one of these machines could be considered a criminal for their participation in this procedure. Every TSO who is in a position of authority of them, going all the way up the chain of command to the head of the TSA (and higher) is potentially liable for conspiracy to and aiding and abetting child pornography.
The TSA is already seen as criminal by most people Apparently it was decided that the reputation of the TSA wasn't bad enough in the eyes of the public. Those who work there are already seen as criminals. Now those who work there risk being seen as sex offenders.