Brit Body Scans Risk Breaking Kid Porn Laws
Officials debating how to protect children
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser User
Posted Jan 5, 2010 2:08 AM CST
A computer monitor displays a full-body scan during a demonstration of passenger screening technology by the Transportation Security Administration in Arlington, Va.   (AP Photo/Haraz N. Ghanbari)

(Newser) – British officials must exempt children from full-body security scans at airports or risk running afoul of the nation's child pornography laws. The British Department for Transport confirmed that the "child porn" problem is among the "legal and operational issues" being discussed as Britain prepares to use the controversial scans to boost security. A pilot program using the scans, which reveal genitalia and breast enlargements, was allowed in Manchester last year only after all children under the age of 18 were exempted.

Changing the law to allow airports to skirt the ban on "indecent" images of children could significantly delay the program, the Guardian reports. Civil liberties groups are arguing that the scans are an illegal invasion of privacy, and present particular concerns to parents of children and celebrities who may be targeted by unscrupulous security workers selling naked images from the scans.