Researchers Believe Skeletal Scans Could Be Newest Screening Technique

By Matthew Harwood


According to the press release, an unidentified researcher had a eureka moment when he discovered online that convicted sex offenders lived in his neighborhood as his daughters prepared to go trick-or-treating.

To create such a screening system, known terrorists and sexual predators would have to have their skeletons scanned and the images stored in a centralized database. Then any installation that installed the technology would scan persons trying to enter a secure area and compare the skeletal scans to the known offender database.

The technology, however, could also have broader applications. Researchers believe governments or corporations protecting sensitive areas or facilities can use skeletal scans to verify that the person trying to access an area is who she says she is.

Also, researchers believe the scan doesn't have to include the whole skeleton, just a part, like the collarbone. And if the researchers leverage already available bone density scanners, Kidambi believes the scanners could be in the field within a year.

The Intelligence Advanced Research Project Activity—the intelligence community's high risk, high reward research wing—has already expressed interest in the technology and invited the researchers to its conference in Washington, D.C., to discuss the idea, according to the press release.

Security expert and blogger Bruce Schneier mocked the idea, writing "Because every country has a database of terrorist skeletons just waiting to be used."

♦ Photo by perpetualplum/Flickr


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