Businesses Fight to Keep Corporate Flight Info Private

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 17, 2009 7:08 PM CDT
Should businesses be allowed to keep their flight records out of public databases? A judge will soon decide.   (AP Photo/Kin Cheung, File)

(Newser) – Business execs who jet around in private planes are fighting to keep their flights secret, reports ProPublica. After a freedom-of-information request from ProPublica, the FAA agreed to change policy and reveal which businesses are allowed to keep their flight records out of public databases. Before the information came out, however, a group of corporate jet users won a temporary restraining order. A judge will now hear from both sides.

"We can't imagine why the list of companies that want to keep the movements of their aircraft a secret should itself be a secret," said a ProPublica executive. The group looked into the issue after the brouhaha that erupted when the CEOs of automakers flew to DC on private jets. When GM then asked the FAA to keep its flight records private, ProPublica wondered how many other companies already enjoy the privelege. Execs argue that they need to keep their trips a secret to protect their business interests.