Effective Aviation Security Requires International Coordination

By Bennet Waters

Dr. Bennet Waters is a Principal at The Chertoff Group in the Firm’s Security Services practice area, where he advises clients on a broad range of services, including homeland and border security management, global commerce and supply chain security, critical infrastructure protection, risk management, and strategic planning and implementation.

On June 28, U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary John Kelly announced enhanced security measures for all flights coming into the United States. Calling for additional “screening of electronic devices, more thorough passenger vetting, and new measures designed to mitigate the potential threat of insider attacks,” Kelly pointed to both evaluated intelligence and the well-known focus of our adversaries in adapting their efforts to attack commercial aviation as reasons for the additional measures. 

Kudos to Secretary Kelly and his team for a thoughtful strategy to protect the traveling public. Since announcing restrictions on personal electronic devices (PEDs) for passengers departing from ten international airports earlier this year, Sec. Kelly was rumored to be considering a global expansion of those restrictions. Instead, he has chosen to take a more measured approach while challenging the international community to raise its bar.

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