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Friday, June 2, 2023

Pekoske Lists TSA’s Milestones Over the Last Year

TSA deployed an additional 534 Credential Authentication Technology units and 191 Computed Tomography X-ray scanners.

During testimony on March 28, before the House Committee on Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security, in which he discussed the FY 2024 budget request, Transportation Security Administration (TSA) Administrator David Pekoske took time to note TSA’s milestones over the last year. 

During the last year, TSA:  

Screened 736 million travelers, an average of more than 2 million passengers per day, with 99.4 percent of passengers waiting less than 30 minutes at airport security checkpoints, and 99.4 percent of TSA PreCheck passengers waiting less than ten minutes. 

Deployed an additional 534 Credential Authentication Technology (CAT) units and 191 Computed Tomography (CT) X-ray scanners, which significantly improve security while reducing physical contact.  

Enrolled 9 new airlines and 3 million individuals in the TSA PreCheck® Application Program. Just this month, on March 2, 2023, TSA achieved the milestone of exceeding 15 million enrolled members in the TSA PreCheck Program and is currently working to onboard two additional enrollment vendors to expand enrollment options. 

Prevented more than 6,542 firearms—a record number—from being carried into the secure area of airports or airplane passenger cabins, the majority of which (88 percent) were loaded. This is a testament to the security proficiency of TSA’s screening officers.  

Trained 4,409 flight crew members in Crew Member Self-Defense training to address increasing trends in unruly passengers and partnered with the Federal Aviation Administration to rescind TSA PreCheck eligibility for passengers who are disruptive aboard flights or during security screening. In especially egregious situations, TSA has taken action to limit individuals from flying in the future if they are assessed to pose a threat to aviation security. 

Expanded the Transportation Security Officer (TSO) new hire training from two to three weeks, providing additional instruction on image interpretation, TSA culture, enhancing the passenger experience, and improved cognitive performance. Additionally, TSA launched TSA Academy West adjacent to Harry Reid International Airport. With this additional training capacity, TSA trained over 9,000 TSO new hires in FY 2022, with almost 1,000 of them attending training at Academy West.  

Established the first outcome-focused cybersecurity-related Security Directives and Security Program Amendments that require mandatory incident reporting and the adoption of mitigation measures to the most critical owners and operators of transportation infrastructure. TSA is working on a rulemaking that will permanently codify critical cybersecurity requirements for pipeline and rail modes.  

Published Information Circulars to Transportation Systems Sector stakeholders with recommended actions to reduce vulnerabilities associated with cybersecurity-related threats.  

Published the Innovation Doctrine—the first of its kind in government, which lays out agreed upon current best practices and establishes mechanisms like Local Innovation for TSA (LIFT) Cells across the country to foster a culture of innovation, provide resources and pathways to solve local-level problems, and expand the innovation ecosystem around transportation security. It also creates an Innovation Pipeline, a disciplined, repeatable, and scalable process for innovation across TSA to out-innovate those that threaten the traveling public, and leverages the TSA Innovation Task Force’s expertise in the evaluation and demonstration of promising technologies.  

Continued several programs and initiatives to recruit and retain TSOs, including a performance-based rewards program called the Model Officer Recognition that provided 19,478 monetary awards or pay increases to top-performing TSOs in FY 2022; and authorized TSO retention incentives at 143 airports, benefitting more than 10,000 employees nationwide. Although these are still needed in certain locations moving forward, the changes in TSA pay structure afforded by the FY 2023 enactment will dramatically reduce the need for these incentives.  

Expanded digital identity technologies that securely enhance the customer experience, including testing TSA PreCheck touchless identity solutions, collaborating with private sector partners to incorporate mobile driver’s licenses into security checkpoint operations, and publishing an Identity Management Roadmap which lays out a comprehensive end-to-end strategy for identity management at TSA.  

Established two Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) Test Bed Programs—one at Miami International Airport and the other at Los Angeles International Airport—to test and evaluate detection, tracking, and identification technology for UAS that enter restricted airspace. TSA continues to collect data on performance of these various technologies to share with industry and government partners.

Read the full testimony at TSA

Homeland Security Todayhttp://www.hstoday.us
The Government Technology & Services Coalition's Homeland Security Today (HSToday) is the premier news and information resource for the homeland security community, dedicated to elevating the discussions and insights that can support a safe and secure nation. A non-profit magazine and media platform, HSToday provides readers with the whole story, placing facts and comments in context to inform debate and drive realistic solutions to some of the nation’s most vexing security challenges.

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