The Transportation Security Administration announced yesterday that it is phasing in tighter security measures on electronics, reports USA Today.
This means you'll have to remove all electronic devices larger than your cell phone — including your laptop and even your Kindle or iPad — from your carry-on bag, and put them in a separate bin for the X-ray screening, with no other items above or below them. Travelers in TSA Precheck will be able to bypass this requirement.
The point is for the TSA to see your devices more clearly, since intelligence officials believe that terrorists have been finding more effective ways to hide explosives inside electronics.
"It is critical for TSA to constantly enhance and adjust security-screening procedures to stay ahead of evolving threats and keep passengers safe," Huban Gowadia, the acting head of TSA, said in a statement. "By separating personal electronic items such as laptops, tablets, e-readers, and handheld game consoles for screening, TSA officers can more closely focus on resolving alarms and stopping terror threats."
The stricter screenings are already in effect at the 10 airports where they were initially tested, which include Boston, Detroit, Fort Lauderdale, and Los Angeles. The TSA plans to phase them in at all U.S. airports "during the weeks and months ahead," says the agency.
Travelers have mixed reactions to the heightened security measures. "If it's something that's going to protect us, then it's a good thing," a woman told the Today show in the video below.
But another woman said: "I think there are a lot of different ways we can address homeland security. I don't necessarily know it's through my Kindle."