The recent Times Square bomb scare has raised a lot of questions about national security. One of the most alarming aspects of this attempted attack was how the alleged bomber, Faisal Shahzad, came to very close escaping. While I’m very glad that Shahzad was eventually seized, the fact that he was not apprehended until sitting comfortably on a runway is more than a little disconcerting.
Shahzad’s near-escape was due to several factors ranging from on the ground surveillance to automated systems which provide intelligence to airlines. As a technologist, I’m very interested in the systems our country has put in place to protect its citizens. As a citizen, I’m frustrated that for all the money we’ve invested into Homeland Security, and the near draconian measures we’ve enacted in previous years, we’re still dropping the ball in the realm of information.