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Oakland Airport deploys new screening tech to fight internal threats

Blog Post
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Publish date

Mar 26, 2019

The following is an excerpt from an article by Travel Weekly’s Robert Silk. You can read the full article here.

A new-generation screening machine is aiding in Oakland Airport’s quest to fend off insider threats from employees and airline staff.

Waltham, Mass.-based Evolv Technology piloted its Evolv Edge® screening system in late 2017 before introducing it in Oakland last May. 

Unlike the security screeners that passengers are accustomed to at TSA checkpoints, the Edge system is able to detect bomb materials in addition to metal objects. Algorithm-powered artificial intelligence also enables the system to recognize ordinary objects that airport employees would be expected to be carrying, such as cellphones, wallets and keys. Another plus is that subjects can be scanned as they are walking. 

Subjects who set off an alert are quickly flagged red on digital graphic displays visible to security workers. The graphic also indicates the portion of the body where the suspicious item has been located. When a subject doesn’t set off an alert, the machine displays a green graphic. 

“The Evolv machine has really transformed our employee screening,” said Doug Mansel, Oakland Airport’s head of security. The system, he said, has functionality to allow for employees to walk through with purses and bags, but Oakland chooses to inspect those anyway, primarily to avoid false alerts that would slow down the screening process. However, employees can walk through the system with their phones and wallets. 

Mansel said the system is popular with employees because it removes the need for pat-downs.

“They’ve really helped us find this balance between security and throughput,” Mansel said of Evolv Technology. 

The full article is available here