tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN May 13, 2015 10:00pm-12:01am EDT
began -- ought to be here and as i said before the hearing began we need to fix a date for him to come in so we can hear from him. i know the chairman has focused on these issues extensively and i want to thank him for all his hard work in this area and i also look forward to the testimony today and with that i yield back i yield back. tonight i thank the gentleman. i will hold the record open for five legislative days for new members who would like to submit a written statement and now we will recognize a panel of witnesses. mr. melvin carraway active administrator for the department of transportation security at the department of homeland security was scheduled to testify but has not arrived, not shown up and has elected to not testify today which was not an optional activity. we are are are pleased at the
honorable john roth inspector general for the department of homeland security. ms. jennifer grover acting director security and justice of at the government accountability office and mr. rafi ron president and ceo of new age security solutions and also has extensive airport security work that he has personally participated in in israel. we welcome you all pursuant to committee rules all witnesses will be sworn before they testify so if you will rise and raise your right hand. do you solemnly swear or affirm that the truth the testimony were about to give a bigger truth the whole truth and nothing but the truth? thank you let the record reflect at all witnesses answered in the affirmative. in order to allow time for discussion we would appreciate it if you would limit your testimony to five minutes and your written record will obviously be made part of the record. we are liberal on your verbal comments but try to keep a close to five and we will start with
you mr. roth. you are recognized for five minutes. >> chairman chaffetz ranking member cummings to members of the committee thank you for inviting me here to testify today about airport security issues. each day tsa is required to screen about 1.8 million passengers and 3 million carry-on bags in 450 airports nationwide. tsa faces a classic asymmetric threat. he they cannot afford to miss a single genuine threat without potentially catastrophic consequences. a terrace on the other hand only needs to get it right once. tsa's 50,000 transportation security officers spend long hours performing tedious task that require constant vigilance. complacency can be a huge problem. ensuring consistency across dhs' largest workforce would challenge the best of organizations. unfortunately although nearly 14 years at hassan's tsa's
inception we remain deeply concerned about its ability to execute its mission. since 2004 we have published more than 115 audit and inspection reports on tsa's programs and operations. they have issued hundreds of recommendations to attempt to improve tsa's efficiency and effectiveness. we have conducted a series of covert penetration tasks essentially testing tsa's ability to stop us from bringing in simulated explosive weapons through checkpoints as well as testing whether we could enter secure areas through other means means. although the results of those tests are classified and we would be happy to brief any member of their staff in a secure setting with regard to our specific findings we identified vulnerabilities caused by human technology-based failures. we have reported on tsa's acquisitions. there are reports showed tsa faces significant challenges in contracting for goods and services.
despite spending billions on aviation security technology are testing of certain systems has revealed no result in improvement. we have examined the performance of tsa's workforce which is largely a function of who is hired and how they are trained and managed. our audits have repeatedly found that human error often simple failure to follow protocol posed a significant security vulnerability. we have looked at how tsa plans for deployed plans for deploys and maintains its equipment and found challenges at every step in the process. these weaknesses that reopen negative impact on transportation security as well. additionally we have looked at how tsa says is risk in determining the screening. we applaud tsa's efforts to use risk-based passenger screening because it allows tsa to focus some the unknown risk passengers instead of noncredit passengers who pose less risk however we have deep concerns about some of tsa's decisions about the level
of risk. we recently assessed the initiative and as a result of that inspection we have concluded that some of the methods that tsa used in determining risk our sound approaches to increasing the population. risk assessment rules creates security vulnerabilities. based on our review we believe tsa needs to modify initiative setting and screening processes. unfortunately tsa cannot concur with the majority of our recommendations. we believe this represents tsa's value to understand the gravity of the situation. as an example of vulnerabilities we recently reported that human risk assessment rules anatori assessment rules anatori as felons granted expedited screening through pre-check to the travelers a former member of the terrorist group and will member was involved in numerous polonius criminal activities that lead to arrest and conviction. after serving a multiple year prison sentence the traveler was
released. notwithstanding the fact the that transportation security officer recognize the traveler based on media coverage that traveler was permitted to use expedited screening. tsa has taken some steps to amend a recommendation to direct security vulnerabilities nonetheless some, persist throughout tsa cannot control or risk to transportation security many issues are well within their control. despite planning strategies for efficiently requiring equipment that operates at full capacity to detect dangerous items for example would go a long way towards improving overall operations. better training and management of transportation security officers would help mitigate the effects of human order -- error which can never be eliminated but can be reduced. taken together tsa's focus on its practices and oversight of its technical assets and work worse is workforce with help enhance security as well as customer service for air
passengers. mr. chairman this concludes my prepared statement and i welcome any questions you or other members of the committee may have. >> thank you mpeg senior staff who spent a lot of time putting this information together we appreciate it. ms. grover's. >> good morning chairman chaffetz and other staff. screening systems must work properly to deliver the security protections that they promised. over several years gao is found weaknesses in tsa's oversight of the screening systems raising questions of whether tsa is falling short in its ability to ensure aviation security. tsa has taken some steps to improve oversight of these systems that additional actions are needed. today i will focus on four areas. first a secure flight program
which matches passenger information against federal government watch lists to ensure that those who should not fly or should receive enhanced screening are identified. second a i.t. systems which are the full-body scanners that are used to screen passengers for items at the checkpoint. there have been inclusions screening process which tsa uses to provide expedited screening to passengers who were not previously identified as low risk and for criminal history checks done to airport -- to set airport workers. regarding secure flight we found september 2014 at tsa did not have timely and reliable information about the extent extender causes of system matching errors. which occur when secure flight fails to identify passengers who were matches to the watch list. in response to usa has developed a mechanism to keep track of the non-matching errors and they are considering considering methods
to evaluating your flights matching rates on in ongoing basis. regarding ait we found in march 2014 at tsa did not include information about screener performance when they were evaluating a i.t. effectiveness. rather tsa's assessment was limited to the accuracy of ait systems in the laboratory. however after ait identifies a potential threat of screening officer must do a targeted pat-down to resolve the alarm. the bus the accuracy of the screeners and conducting their pat-downs properly and identifying alternate items is key to understanding the effectiveness of the i.t. systems in the airport operating environment. dhs concurred with our recommendation to measure a i.t. as a function of both technology and the screening officers operating but has not fully address their recommendation. similarly in december 2014 we found tsa has not tested the security effectiveness of
conclusion systems as it functions as a whole. as part of managed conclusion tsa uses multiple layers of security. such has explosive detection devices and canines to mitigate the inherent risk associated with screening randomly selected passengers in a system that was designed for low risk passengers. however if the security layers are not working as intended in tsa may not be sufficiently screening passengers. as you know that tsa has tested individual layers of security used in its conclusion and is reported finding them effective although gao has raised concerns about the effectiveness of some of these layers such as behavior detection officers. at the time of the report tsa was planning to complete testing testing of inclusion system by may 2016. finally regarding tsa then bowman and airport worker vetting we found in december december 2011 that the criminal history information available to
you tsa and airport was limited. specifically ta save access to criminal history records was excluding state records. in response to our recommendation tsa and the fbi confirmed there was a risk of incomplete information and the fbi isn't reported expanding the criminal history record information available to tsa for the security threat assessments. in conclusion tsa has made progress in improving its screening oversight such as by taking steps to understand the vulnerabilities in the secure flight program and working with the fbi to obtain access to more complete criminal background information yet more work remains to ensure that secure flight and managed inclusion are working as tsa intends. chairman chaffetz ranking member cummings this concludes my statement that i look forward to your questions. >> thank you. mr. ron you are now recognized for five minutes. >> thank you mr. chairman and
committee members think you've were inviting me to testify again before you. i have chosen to speak today not on passenger screening as the witnesses have referred in detail but rather go into what mr. cummings mentioned earlier and that is the failure to give what i would describe as the airport so these which is an extremely important part of our airport and aviation security system. what i wish the committee to understand is that the importance of airport security has to be measured against the threat of somebody being able to access some aircraft parked on
the ground without knowledge or without detection and in the case of the stowaway as we have witnessed in the past they try to get, to take -- to hide in the wheel well but instead of that instead of 120 pounds of bone and flesh they leave behind a two-pound device that will not be noticed. the measures that are being implemented today are simply unable to do that. so if i would put that into -- and i would say well we invest billions of dollars every year in screening passengers and at the same time we leave the
parameter but don't want to say and attended that i say unattended to a satisfactory level, what we actually do is invest all of our resources and leaving the backdoor open but at the end of the day it is the same aircraft that we are trying to protect by screening that would be harmed by the relatively easy access of individuals through the parameter. the parameter is certainly something we have noticed in the past. i haven't seen a lot of development during the last few years despite the fact that they have made a lot of red lines. the other subject that brings a lot of heads will -- headlines lately is the issue of the threat of an insider becoming
part of an operation and carry out illegal activity that could be also translated into terrorist threats. we saw the case in atlanta and here in this case i have to say that tsa has responded to it rather quickly by increasing their background checks and the frequency of those checks but as we just heard from the other witnesses it's still an open question about the background check itself and if it provides us with the security. the third i would like to refer to is the issue of how well do we protect the public against
ground attacks as we witnessed a couple of years ago at lax when an active shooter started shooting at the checkpoint and the security forces at the airport responded in a way that certainly can lead us to conclusion for improvement in this area. the common denominator of what are the three-point sediuk made is that none of them are relayed to passengers and yes they are falling back even in comparison with screening passengers. that means the reason for that is in 2001 the tsa was established it was established both as an implementer of security as well as a regulator. i don't know any other example
of government structures where an entity is regulating itself. there has to be a certain level of dependence and authority for the regulator to first of all issue regulations that sometimes they not be comfortable but still have to be performed and certainly when you look for the performance that doesn't meet regulatory requirements that you are in charge of implementation that is a conflict of interest and i strongly recommend that the committee would have a look at it and consider a solution to that. the last one that i would like to make is when we look at police forces at airports around the country we see more or less standard law enforcement organizations.
but we have to understand that the airport the police function prior date is prevention rather than law enforcement and reaction because when i terrorist attacks takes place it's all over. there is very little except the damages if we talk about exclusive devices and even woman talk about active shooters we need to perform better. that certainly calls for a different type of airport security. airport security should be a dedicated specialized force where people are selected on the basis of their ability to perform those roles. they have to be trained and certified and their certification has to be maintained. exercises should be carried out on a regular basis and at the end of the day we have to make sure that the capability to
prevent or in cases where we need to respond would be quick and effective and this is not where we are today. i thank you very much. >> thank you mr. ron nala the witnesses. we are going to go to rather questions and i will start. first of all what you just said was interesting. you said tsa tries to do everything and there are very few models of this. i think only romania, bulgaria and some third world countries have that structure and they there should be some separation. the government should be in charge of security information for sample getting the intelligence preparing the list so even if you prepare a list and you testified for several that you respond. am i correct in what i say about the structure being flawed?
>> yes sir. >> we never set it up to that tsa continue to operate this huge screening force. never in our wildest imagination would be imagined or to 6000 screeners and 15,000 administrators. stop and think about that and begin the report has been released today you see why carraway would show up. just go over it. are fairly independent mr. roth? the first thing we conducted covert penetration tests. i also asked the staff and if the members are nailed who have not participated in a closed briefing you need to get a closed briefing and hear about the rate of failures. you'll be appalled. it's appalling the failure rate rate we don't have to give any specifics that are classified
but it's an appalling failure right right mr. roth? >> i am deeply concerned. >> we have seen vulnerability in human failures. we will set that up in the committee members have audit to tsa's acquisitions. numb -- number to the acquisition history is a complete fiasco. i cited the competing lobbyists the buying equipment that didn't work and people weren't trained for and now the report back here is the gao technology report and you said you cited some of the technology oversight in this report in march of last year does not enforce compliance with operational directives. that is still the case? in fact from march of 2011 through february 2013 about half
the airport with ait systems did not report any ied check point results. is this correct? >> yes sir that's correct. >> and not much movement according to what you found mr. roth on operation training and auditing. is that correct? >> that's correct. >> okay then let's go, the third . this is what he found examining the performance of tsa's workforce which is largely a function of who is hiring and how they are hired and trained and managed. still problems with recruiting. still problems with training mr. roth? >> correct. >> still problems with managing and responsibility in conducting audit and oversight within the system. >> that's right pay its. >> your audits have repeatedly found human error and often a
simple failure to follow protocol. those are significant vulnerabilities. is that your statement? >> it is sir to its. >> let's go the last one here. tsa managed to maintain its equipment. people not realize the threat is very serious and ongoing and the bad guys are one step ahead of us. just look at the history. the shoe bomber. tsa never detected it right? >> correct. >> the diaper bomber never detected it, right? >> correct. >> "the new york times" square bomber. he bought his ticket on the phone went to jfk and went through all the screening systems and was not stop until we got on the plane and it wasn't tsa.
>> that's my understanding. >> that's my understanding that these are failures of the 7 billion-dollar, 61,000 people system. this is an indictment and it's very concerning. equipment failure is also very concerning because that sort of your last line of defense. we have advanced imaging technology and if people are not trained to operate it or detect it detect threats. is that right mr. roth? >> we found significant human error. >> so what we have got so and in then the last thing these guys are smart. when members and staff get the next briefing the thing that concerns me is right now all the systems are pretty much metal or nitrate base. is that pretty much an assumption that they detect metal or nitrate's?
for explosives? >> i can testify about that. >> i can tell you that is what they are. we tried to put in place behavior detection system which was a total failure. other committees have look at how we did it better wrong. israel can profile. israel can do other things that we can't do and behavior detection as far as you are concerned in one of these reports is a failure too. that is looking at people and detecting behavior. >> both the ig as well as gao have done work on that. >> finally some of the state guards aren't in place for the passengers pre-check system and making certainly eliminate people who pose a risk. is that still the case yes or no? >> yes. >> is that still the case ms. grover? >> yes sir.
create. >> what is astounding is this particular individual i cited before the woman was so notorious that the tsa officer identified her by either pictures he had seen the other terrorists, went to supervisor and she got not only a free pass but x. divided by tsa. that's a failure isn't it mr. roth? >> yes. >> ms. grover? >> system that case actually worked as tsa intended to it work. >> but her data never came up. >> she was not on a watchlist. >> exact way so that's where we need to get this information. people who pose a risk we can identify them or stop them. finally the badge issue. the badge issue, was it a couple of years at the tsa approved the badges and atlanta where they gave badges out and didn't do
proper background checks? is that right mr. roth? >> we have done some work on that. in 2013 we have an audit where we found the backlog was so great that tsa allowed airports simply to grant the site up batches without a background check been done. >> of the items cited by mr. sim type one of the issues is that people inside the system pose a risk. the perimeter you mentioned poses a risk that we don't have systems in place for and in the outdated structure that we have where tsa tries to do everything and does nothing very well which is well-documented by your report. thank you mr. roth and i yield now tim ms. maloney the gentlelady from new york. >> thank you panelists for your testimony and your work and i think the ranking member and chair for calling this important hearing. i agree completely with the statements of mr. roth when he
said the terrorist only has to be right once. we have to be right 100% of the time and stop them from coming true. i would say nothing is more important than protecting our people and i will say that since 9/11 the new york city police department is documented well over 17 attempts to murder new yorkers and they have been thwarted through the combined efforts of all of enforcement including tsa which is working every day to stop it. for some reason in our testified intelligence briefings airlines continue to be a top priorities for terrorists, top priority. they keep trying different ways and we keep hearing reports from airline stewardesses and captains on how they are trying to break the perimeter and trying to get into the cockpit in different ways. i see this as a collective effort to fight back. not just tsa but all of us working with them to fight back.
the pre-check program also needs commerce to work and airlines were so backed up people weren't flying anymore. in new york the pre-check out graham is a success. now the pre-check line is longer than the normal line. more people are in the pre-check line than in the other so many people are in it which i think speaks well that we have processed a lot of people and made more efficient. i want to ask mrs. grover apparently 33% of passengers now pass through pre-check. how many people are in pre-check that would use a? >> the last date i saw was almost half where we see expedited screening in one form or another. >> cap were receiving it in one form or another. that's a remarkable achievement from where you started. i see this also is an effort in many ways. we are trying to crackdown also on terrorist financing.
many of the banks are complaining about having to do pre-check. they have to it validate every single one of their customers and there have been some ideas about letting their system work with homeland security on combining the pre-check list. you have to reporting you have to report on pre-check and i think that's a valuable new tool that we can look at and make it more efficient and also stopping more people. i wonder mrs. grover what you think about that and either proposed outline of pilot project in that area that i would like you to look at them have your department get back to us. >> thank you. we would be happy to do that. right now the background checks are for individuals who sign up for pre-check are conducted by tsa and includes a criminal background check a check on immigration status, and a third
aspect of the check and that is against the terrorist group database. so i would be interested in talking with your staff about the specific work you would like to do in terms of opportunities to expand that. >> there are other units in our country that are also doing background checks so put it compile them together and make it more efficient in knowing who these people are and increase their ability to keep the bad people out of new york or out of the country. as one who represents many families who pierced him on 11 it's an issue of great concern to me. when we created this whole system overview at airports it was hotly-debated whether should be private or government and many of us believe that our police and fire toward charged with attacking our government tsa has the same level of importance in protecting our
people and are now a huge target which continues for some reason in our airlines. i believe it should remain a government function. there is a movement in congress to privatize and i'm opposed to that. i believe it would weaken the system and not strengthen it but i welcome hearing ideas on how we can strength strengthen this important program. the bottom line we haven't had another tragedy in a long time. when was the last time we had one? we have had many attempts that when was the last time we had a terrorist attack was successful on the airline's? ms. grover? >> well i guess 2009 attack would probably be the last significant one. >> would happen in 2009? >> that was an attempt to take down an airline. it was the gentleman that was bringing explosives onto the
plane and that was stopped on the plane or in response to that tsa put additional systems in place to be able to detect nonmetallic explosives and they also started expanding the watchlist. as part of our work we have found their weaknesses in the ability of the current systems to be able to identify all of the people who are on the watchlist. we also have work that has expose weaknesses in the ait systems and tsa's knowledge of how well they work so they are a still work to be done. >> it's a work in progress so we join you in your efforts and thank you for your testimony. my time has expired. thank you. >> thank you. >> thank you mr. thank you mr. chairman. mr. ron what you believe breaches should be a top priority? in your testimony dimension
perimeter breaches and you mentioned the wheel wells situation but why do you believe parmertor prevention should be a top priority? >> because at the end of the day everything we do at a checkpoint could be boiled down to the need to prevent a passenger from bringing an explosive device or a weapon that would allow an attack against the aircraft. the same target could be achieved simply by reaching the perimeter and a problem with breaching the perimeter is that we have reports about 230 something cases that the "associated press" reported lately but those are the cases that we know about. keep in mind that most airports around the country do not have a detection system on their
perimeter. therefore one could enter or leave the airport without leaving any traces. there is no systematic way to prevent that. at the end of the day that is what we are trying to prevent at the checkpoint. i would consider it as being critical. >> a kind of negates the effort. do you think the tsa is taking the insider outsider threat seriously? >> i think the fact that there is a division between federal responsibility and local responsibility. it leads to the failure to operate perimeter security. when it comes to the implementation responsibility of tsa and all the resources available and the screening
corporation takes a major, almost all of tsa's process. when it comes to perimeter security it is expected that the airport will take care of that. the airport doesn't have either the manpower to do that. the forces are too short for that. the ability to invest in detection technology around the perimeter which doesn't come cheap. it's also very limited. if in the past and they refer to 9/11 when faa was the regulator only the regulator and it controlled airports for improvements. security was part of it. now security is not very much a
priority for fda because it has been pushed towards tsa. the idea of funding those necessary steps is important. >> for the coordination is out of whack as well with resources. let me just move on asking each of you to respond to this question. do you believe tsa overprescribed technological solutions and fails to think creatively about airport security but. >> yes i do. i think basically we do not pay enough attention to the passenger themselves and the fact that we have started implementing steps in the other direction like pre-checks should be welcome although we should carefully look at what is being done as suggested earlier but i think it's a step in the right direction. i also think the behavior
detection as part of it but obviously i have the dispute on that with some of the other. >> ms. roper could you respond? >> i would answer a question by saying the tsa is overemphasizing getting their programs up and running and that under a precise thing there effectiveness. >> are we lacking imagination and creativity? >> you no tsa is open to different options and they put different strategies import -- in place but creativity is not helpful at of tsa doesn't have evidence to show it works. >> mr. roth. >> briefly at believe the best technology solutions in the world that the work horses not trained to use them does not follow the protocols that they are supposed to use is useless so there is that. >> my concern is a travel through detroit and washington most generally i see tsa agents
attempting to perform their functions in most cases with courtesy doing their jobs as is clear they have been told to do but i just wonder if there are some great ideas that could come from tsa agents themselves that people like mr. carraway and others aren't willing to listen to or given time to listen to on how to do what they're passengers and security risks which includes the perimeter. they hear about it just like us. we know for fact that all of it done at the project i nor the general line can be taken out of any type of positive results simply because we haven't have looked at all of the places we go so thank you for your testimony and icy my time has expired. i yield back. >> mr. lynch you are recognized. >> thank you mr. chairman.
mr. chairman if i could just ask, i know that because of the scope and the depth of the problem here mr. carraway's a tendency would be very important and i'm wondering if the committee has no plans to subpoena him mr. chairman? >> i honestly don't know. i discussed that with staff before. >> and i yield to the ranking member? >> what is your question? >> well the fact that we have some wide problems here from perimeter security to people that are on the pre-checklist that are felons and it's a wide gap in our security. mr. carraway's attendance would be extremely important and i am just wondering are we going to get him in there because a lot of my questions are for him. >> same here.
>> i did want to ask the ranking member. >> chairman chaffetz and i discussed this. it's fine to avoid in the subpoena and i mentioned earlier in my opening i agree we really do need carraway here. and so i asked the chairman decided date certain for him to come in so that we can get him an ear to ask him questions because you are absolutely right to. >> i would agree. we talked about it with the chairman and i would be supportive of a subpoena if necessary. >> if it's needed or if i want to voice my support for that as well and the fact that the gentleman is not here sort of feeds into the home narrative that we have a bureaucracy that is not really responding to the problems that are out there. but i do want to thank our
witnesses. let's not diminish her attendance and i appreciate your valuable testimony and it has already been helpful. as i said we have got some major gaps in security. there've been several notable security breaches and i know on september 14 2013 a tsa employee was arrested along with five others participating in a scheme to smuggle undocumented immigrants united states. additionally to airline employees were arrested in december of 2014 for smuggling weapons, guns in them ammunition on lease 20 flights from atlanta to new york over an eight-month period and to tsa security screeners at san francisco national airport were also arrested in march of 2015 for allegedly operating a drug smuggling conspiracy. in addition on march 9 there was a report that was in the press
and nbc had a story about these 1400 batches and these were security badges for employees to access secure areas, they had gone missing over roughly two years. that was at the jackson atlanta international airport. and as well in the city of austin closing arguments today on the death penalty question for one of the marathon bombers and the brother who is now deceased was amiss. he actually left the united states, left boston went to dagestan. we had a report from the russians to our security officers, the fbi and the cia to alert them that he had been
engaged in alarming behavior, contacting terrorist groups in chechnya or dagestan and he was on the tide list of 700,000 names. so this is widespread. mr. roth you have done a great job in terms of authenticating some of the gaps here but do we need to give you more power to actually try to address some of this stuff? there seems to be a division of labor here between the airports and the tsa as to whose responsibility it is to set the security protocols. >> it is a massive job and when you talk about the number badges out there for example. in 2012 we reported there were 3.7 million badges for security areas so the idea of trying to
keep as secure without size, 450 airports across the country is just a massive job. 50,000 tso's, port 6000 transportation security officers. we have initiated a number of criminal investigations against individuals which i think is typical anytime you get a workforce that size who has that responsibility so it's a massive job. >> is there a lot of turnover on these tsa were tso officers? >> i have not looked at that. i'm not sure whether gao has looked at that are not. >> i actually think a lot of them will have to take place in that classified briefing unfortunately so i won't waste any more time. i look forward to that opportunity. thank you and i yield back. >> thank you.
i just have a couple of questions. first of all how many, you said before how many supervisors you have this part of tsa. >> so i'm not sure exact to how many supervisors there are sir. i would be a better question for tsa. >> okay if any of you out there would have an opinion. >> we have not looked at the policy. >> okay when you review or audit them i have heard tsa agents that they feel there's overstaffing going on here. do you concur with that or do you feel there is or do you feel that they are trying to do what they can to tighten things up a little? >> so we haven't look specifically at the question of whether or not there is too much
in the supervisory layer but we did do a report in 2013 that look specifically at the issue of misconduct and found that there were about 9600 misconduct cases adjudicated by tsa over three-year period and at that point the total personnel was about 56,000. the total personnel was 56,000 i believe at that point. and so i would say that there is certainly a need for some supervision. >> okay. can you wear a lot the three major causes of doing things wrong? >> the largest category of misconduct was attendance and leave issue so essentially being absent from work without prior approval work sense of tardiness. the second category of misconduct was screening and
security errors. that accounted for 20% of roughly 10,000 misconduct cases. those would be instances where the sop's were not followed such a screeners allowing individuals or their bags to bypass screening where were tso's were bypassing the equipment checks. those are types of misconduct cases that could lead to a degradation of security. >> collectively you feel if we should be tightening things up a little? >> i don't know if that translates to a need for additional supervisors but certainly there is room for addressing those issues. >> thanks. i yield back rest of my time. >> thank you. the figures we have are that there were 61,000 tsa personnel. that's the latest that i have
and a cap of 46,000 screeners which leaves you with 50,000 people who are not screeners. is that correct? and we have just under or thousand people in washington d.c. within close proximity making on average $104,000 apiece. pretty hefty overhead wouldn't you say alex. >> yankee sir. i'm not familiar with the exact numbers. >> those are pretty close. we built a huge bureaucracy and never intended it to be that way way. we have got to get it under control better manage whether it's training, equipment performance the passenger facilitation systems that don't work. a lot of deficits and i know mr.
mr. ron mentioned the issues of permit or security. i just visited an airport this past week in knoxville and looking at their vulnerabilities vulnerabilities. but you could take any airport whether it's laguardia where you can get a little rubber raft and end up on the runway or any major airport in the country is easily penetrable by the perimeter and some of the issues you raised mr. ron. i yield back to her time. do you have the time? >> a few years ago they instituted these new things to see through whatever. they were kind of controversial
at the time. have you ever thought about restricting and can you comment in general? >> what you are referring to is what are called ait machines which are the advanced imaging technology machines where you have to put your hands up. we are doing covert testing on that but as we speak we will write a classified report with regard to that. earlier terms give us some concern. >> concern of what major? >> whether they are effective. >> okay. >> i might point out just for the record and i pointed out at the beginning and i don't know if you were here sir but the acquisition of that equipment was very controversial and mr. chaffetz objected to them buying some of the equipment that he felt violated people's rights. they went ahead and split the contractors up between
mr. chertoff's client which was rapid scan in between l3 which was mrs. daschle half a billion dollars worth of contracts that split equally. the rapid scan could not he changed so that it wouldn't violate people's privacy and that equipment effort ring installed was pulled out. so we have been through that three-ring circus. now that this report focuses on the deployment of some of that equipment for example the advanced imaging detection which is millimeterwave where you put your hands up and we have problems with maintaining the equipment operating the equipment, auditing the performance of the equipment all outlined by these witnesses. the gentleman from california is
recognized. >> thank you mr. chairman. let me begin with recognizing the enormity of the responsibilities you have an assuming the many successes but i want to talk about the perimeter given them from the bay area and we have had a lot of news coverage on that case and other cases. mr. roth you mentioned in her opening comments that complacency is a huge problem and human error is too common and basically human air is to follow protocol and you also mentioned tsa has to be right every time and a terrorist only has to be right on time. we have lots of examples of property -- proper quality assurance in similar situations in hospitals or industrial sila these. or maybe mr. sub i've knows or know grover is their basic management tool in the situations to make sure the
complacency isn't the order of the day? >> i think it's severalfold. one is oversight. tsa itself is what they call they think red teams which go in and do testing testing on systems and individuals to ensure that they get it right. we obviously do covert testing as well and i think it's a matter of training is in the military. there's a training culture that you do a certain protocol the same way every single time then you are going to at least lower the incidence of human error. >> is that your view? >> the results we have found have shown that. >> is there in your view a mis-prioritization? should there be more emphasis on technology? >> i think there needs to be more of an emphasis on training. >> you were talking that we put a lot of emphasis on the front over the backdoor is wide open
and given your comments in israel massachusetts are both under low threshold cost or higher or medium level because you mentioned you don't have the research did you do the higher-level. >> one thing that i find missing at the base is there a lack of a comprehensive approach to challenge aviation security. we are to finding the relatively narrow angles to take care of those angles but sometimes we miss the wider picture. i think perimeter security is a perfect example for that because while they are trying to prevent an event on one side of the operation there is a lot and on the other side we allow the situation to remain as poor as
it is for many years despite all the links. >> in your previous experience you have to balance your resources and your funding and risk assessment. are we doing that efficiently lacks. >> yes i think risk assessment is an ongoing process. it has to be part of the operation continuously and it has to be present all the time it has to be done at every level so when we talk about passengers for example there is room for individual risk assessment for every passenger. in order to identify the level of risk is that passenger i think the criminal background check is not enough. >> i was speaking more in relationship to the front door the backdoor and is this a proper risk assessment that we should put more in the franco and not in the backdoor? you imply that we weren't.
>> my answer is -- [inaudible] sprey ms. grover dudes care to comment on the complacency from syrupy perimeter problems? >> in the earlier work we did looking at perimeter security issues? >> found was the tsa had not been able to do a complete risk assessment because they weren't sufficiently assessing the vulnerability of different airports. they have since made steps in that area and we do have a review underway now to look at that issue. the other issue that i would raise to tsa is a question about whether or not they're making adequate use of the data that they have. they do require airports to report all incidents to tsa but when we look at the dataset previously we found it wasn't organized or recorded in a way that tsa could specifically identify how many incidents were
related to permit related to perimeter or access breaches. again they have made some changes so we will be able to report back in the future on whether they are able to analyze that data. >> thank you and thank you mr. chairman. >> i thank the gentleman. mr. heise is recognized. >> thank you mr. chairman. this past february nbc news reported that over 1400 security badges were missing in jackson atlanta international airport over the last two years alone. mr. roth could you explain how tsa responds when some of the security badges turn up missing? >> we are doing some ongoing review of tsa security controls so my answer would be a lemon area but my understanding based on my conversation with tsa officials is once a badge goes missing it is turned off so this
has to be a two-factor authentication. we have to take the badge and swipe it to be able to enter secure areas. the difficulty of course is this idea piggybacking. someone else opens the door and the walk-through or other ways to gain access to secure areas and that is the whole challenge behind these access badges. if you work in a mcdonald's at the airport you get a badge and you quit the next day and you still have that badge. it's incumbent upon the airport to report that to tsa is the badge gets turned off. >> you would say the responsibility rests with the airport? >> it is a joint responsibility as i understand it. >> atlanta airport was the only airport reported on that particular study. 1400 badges missing in two years.
>> >> let me go back to another situation in atlanta. we although there was a gun smuggling insider ring in the atlanta airport that was discovered this last december. to your knowledge has there been any changes in security checks since the gun smuggling ring was discovered? >> we're in the middle of an audit so unfortunately i cannot give you a complete
answer. will there be changes? >> absolutely. at this point i have to differ and told the audit is completed to have recommendations of mr. tsa that makes sense. >> what needs to be done with verifying that those have security badges do not have a criminal history? >> we are about to come out with a report to check the efficacy of on a the of criminal background checks and the gao has done work on that in the past. >> how many are there? >> one for every employee who has a badge. >> in that scenario there is one background check is there anything to protect the public when the cease
individuals getting involved with criminal activity after the initial check? >> no. >> should there be? >> absolutely going through that investigative presence. >> please report back. >> i would very much appreciated. >> thank you mr. chairman for conducting this hearing. i appreciate the effort to streamline the security process to shift focus to those that a higher risk my understanding is all airline passengers compared the federal government there is
a watch list through the secret flight program. is that correct? >> yes, sir,. >> but all the individuals enrolled in the pre-check program are also checked against other law enforcement ahu is that correct if they apply for the paycheck than they are checked against criminal background information. >> that requires individuals to self report but if there is after they are enrolled that they have to self report any new crimes. is that correct? >> i am not sure if that is true for free check but it is an aviation workers but at the airport.
>> does this pose a security risk? >> it does is in the pre- check program it does require self reporting that if i apply for pre-check them convicted one year later my pre-check is good five years of i don't report that tsa will not know about that. >> any idea how many have self reported? >> no sir. >> ms. grover to identify instances that the flight is accurately identified on the watch list is that correct? >> yes sir,. >> what about the ability of secure flight data designating individuals at low risk?
>> so the secure flight system is used to identify individuals on the watch list we do know there are errors it doesn't always identify people on the high watchlist so after that said is done most people are tagged then the remaining passengers are screened if they are a known low risk traveler why they are identified for pre-check then there is another tier of automated assistance -- assessments sometimes it shows up on your boarding pass even if you did not sign up for it is in advance >> how can we be sure that accurately assesses the risk level? >> we recommend tsa should
have a new performance measure in place to keep track of the ongoing basis of how well secure flight is doing to identify everyone on the general watchlist. they are working on a budget it is not in place yet. >> how you keep from stereotyping or profiling? >> that would be most relevant at the airport when individuals are selected and they are supposed to use the ipad that has a random miser so there should be some protection from profiling but there have been questions raised over the behavior detection officers of that could be factoring into their decisions but they are a
part of that process. >> you made 17 recommendations in your report many dealing with the ability of the pre-check initiative to assess the risk level of the individual. knu briefly talk about the areas that need improvement? >> unfortunately they are sensitive security or classified but we have made recommendations that tsa needs to really rethink their assessment rolls they have largely disagreed with our recommendations. >> it is unfortunate. thank you for your time. >> a couple of points you testified the employees while first of all, are not checking that background before they are employed as part of the finding.
fin day are not checking after words if they appear on a criminal list after words but then i want to know about free check can you check people after they have been cleared? in israel they control who does the pretax then they're always reexamining those individuals. and they can stop a access from the information and that concurrently and tell us about the pre-check. that there was no recuring
to vetting of voluntary disclosure. i am not sure about the employees. >> with respect to there pre-check employees it is just a day are checked against the federal watchlist and as far as aviation workers it is the same thing they are checked regularly against a federal watchlist although tsa has recently announced they will redo criminal background checks every two years. i don't know if that is in place yet. >> mr. chairman i apologize because i have been in another hearing and also trying to meet with constituents but i do want to ask about in the testimony that stood out to me. that although most employees are hard-working your kids
but talking about serious that is particularly troubling their crimes that the but they flaunt the law for their personal gain and susceptible to a terrorist influence. i know of lot of times with the 24 hour news cycle but it seems to be a sensational statement when you say you mentioned in the atlanta smuggling is this over sensationalized?
am not mistaking including the ar-15. >> the data is from several years ago. >> but you indicated this case to go into the restricted area and another actually took a flight to san one according to reports so it is a very good example to how these things work and you can assume that similar -- and similar involvement is more frequently than otherwise.
>> you were director of security at the tele-tv airport so what are the things that you could do that people in your similar security field are not doing here? >> the televisa system is based very much on our ability to look get that level of threat of individual employees with a background check to start to implement. >> we need much deeper background checks. >> that is one important rule but but comparison it to airports like atlanta but
we could actually keep our finger on the pulse with what happens at the airport. if somebody was behaving in a way that indicated that he may be involved with illegal activity than there is a dedicated unit that is looking exactly only after not only with security but others. >> should we have another incentive program for those that turn it or are recognized with the usual criminal activity? >> in other words, should reach each other airline employees or airports
employees the things to watch for when you say day act in unusual ways? >> yes. obviously the the end of the day there is limited access but just think about employees. this is different because it is also issued to non employees but through the human-resources and intelligence activity at the airport those parts of the airport it makes it very effective. >> we your spending negev billion is now -- may get
billions are we getting the baying for auerbach? grey river is significant room for improvement talking about security background checks with individuals you talk about 3.7 million people they you have to get the background check for it is of massive challenge. can't tsa tighten up and of those records show there are areas where they can't but we need to understand the scope and the problem that tsa faces. >> defects can track a package and american express can tell you instantaneously
switch your credit card certainly reaching get this right. but now we go to ms. kelley from illinois to make thank you for holding this hearing on the pressing issue. also our witnesses the of taking time out of their schedule to speak with us today. the summer travel season is fast approaching we will be pressed to maximum capacity with overworked agency and control tower officials but also neutralizing a security thread it as difficult as finding a needle. but how my constituents know all too well they are certified i am sure most people at some point has missed a connecting flight for had of a layover in one of our airports. i hear complaints all the
time. [laughter] long security lines are not only frustrated in and inefficient but not save the need for a third airport in chicago has been known for years but to make the south suburban airport a reality it is close to becoming a reality and i will continue to push for its creation that's why i would like to witnesses to provide their insight how with another major airport operating at capacity impacts national security? in the other with the construction to improve it by easing pressures so whoever wants to take the question? >> i can start. i a agree with the panelists
that tsa just the press is difficult as airports operate more and more at capacity there are inherent challenges but i would suggest the challenges that tsa faces to improve security across their system are independent of exactly how many airports we have up and running and if they work to capacity because they are the inherent systemwide efforts and the tsa could focus is how well their systems are working. >> once again the need to
approach but right now in my view we do leave quarters unattended as we have discussed this rats -- a the threats and others. to have a more balanced system which by the way will never be perfect. >> anytime that you add this size with complexity enhanced flexor the always leads to new challenges but to your specific question we have not done any specific
work so it is difficult for me to comment. >> i yield back. >> are you familiar with the concerns of the gao about the inclusion program? did you explain what steps tsa has taken to address that? >> tsa told us they have the effectiveness study under way they expect to have results to the latter half of 2016 i believe specifically they are evaluating the behavior of the detection officers and the canine teams. >> the inspector general recommended that managed inclusion program be called
because of the technology checkpoints this would prevent passengers who are a no security threat to bypass inspections to the inspection and general but do they have demanded inclusion program? >> my a understanding is they are reducing manager inclusion and the other messes they used to put people into expedited screening and as more people applied to pre-check they will reduce that but it is still something that they use and we are concerned about that these are unknown passengers which means they are in and no risk and anytime you have that going
through expedited screening then you have a security vulnerability. >> we made the number of recommendations that our nonpublic but it we do believe shows a lack of appreciation. >> did they give you excuses limit they disagree with though level of risk they think it is acceptable and i believe it is not one of the reasons i and vice a briefing because every time i do members of congress tend to agree it is unacceptable risk. >> you think they just discount your concerns over see you as the expert we
have a fundamental disagreement about what level of risk is acceptable. >> we have seen a report of a 50 year-old but what can they do to stop this from the future? >> mike understanding is said tsa responsibility that is of the airport itself not tsa but we don't have a specific issue so we don't have specifics with their
response. >> day you have an opinion? >> this is one of the problems because it does not consider part of its responsibilities as a regulator in past to make sure somebody else does it and it isn't really happening. but they are not trying to provide with to protect the security with a detection system and water requires to respond to alarms. >> how was that different from airports where you have spent? >> building airports is the big responsibility to have the structure very clear there's so there was security organization, that takes care of all the other
passengers or a facility and it makes it much easier to cut the priorities. >> whose irresponsibility is this? to make it is minders standing that it is the airports responsibility and not tsa that is based on my in the standing but we haven't done any work in this area. >> tsa does take the position it is airports responsibility to decide how they will be secured but tsa does a paper check to say given what they decide to put in place for the perimeter does it match up and then they also do read annual compliance inspections were they observe to make sure they are in place and we have a study under way to do assessment of what is going on. >> way to.
you said then tsa said this is what we think it ought to me. >> yes. there are regulations that lay out at a high level with the requirements need to be to secure the perimeter. at each individual airport the airport decides how they meet that requirement. it could be a fence or maybe they say we don't need that because of the body of water. but with the security program is the paper review check check check check yes it is reasonable you protect your parameter once and then
there would walk the of poorer. >> what happens the day after? the mcfadyen c airports responsibility and we sat on together on the to his petition committee but they all claim everything is tight. when they say the rubber meets the road there will be fine. but then we find out there are guides everybody assumes the other person does it then it is up there is a problem. i am just wondering what cap
but to create a whole in the fence while they figure out maybe they don't look at the fence as often as they should but now we have full year to wait. are you satisfied with that feature. >> there are definite the vulnerabilities that that is a nation in that is a grave concern for those thank you for your testimony but with
to do one into% audit but all the badges that are issued up against the contractor list to say it doesn't match. then they do in additional 10% that is a fifth whole exercise to come behind to major there for has stood to have. >> that is my follow-up. >> actually how to verify the airports are is in
compliance won't rehash of hot hud does tea is said blood dash tsa verified the difference and pontians? what is the procedure? >> it is the couple pulled mine understanding it will go through a and audit and they have an entire office of the inspections. i don't have the answer but what we're doing but i suspect you are with regard. >> but i just want to say as i hear but i cannot find the
but it is troubling to me. it should have been something triggered by our own to say it is in the media now we have to respond. thank you. >> if there are no for art -- for their members it is not acceptable for tsa with the oversight committee to put pages and pages of redacted information and. day you have trouble? >> we do not. and to your report is as comprehensive as it seems. the problem is it highlights after years tangiers we have created a very expensive and dysfunctional transportation
security system. there are many potentials for risk that are not addressed. i will create the more i looked at this the more i am convinced intelligence intelligence intelligence. dell rio the only country in the world where the agency is the regulator, the auditor the manager and it doesn't do any of them well to connect the dots with the database and to oh most recently from the boston bovvers that the dots were there but we have
concentrated huge manageable system with a screening process to concentrate to get that intelligence to set the protocols to alter them. is that what we should do? >> yes. >> the israelis have done a great job. after 9/11 they helped us in many areas say and to continue to lend there expertise. if not for israeli intelligence and british intelligence we would have been taken down several times. with those barriers that we have because we have a different society but it is a very serious situation.
the national summit to prevent use violence. attorney general lynches had a very busy couple of weeks i am delighted she has taken the time to be with us today percoid behalf of the assistant attorney general carol mason who was not able to join us today common thank you for making the trip to washington. your commitment to reducing violence and for the opportunity we are grateful for your effort dissipation am proud to be your partner. so let's take a moment to represent what we hear from the east coast.
>> loud and clear. how about the southern states and the heart of the nation? but the international representatives? we have day busy day ahead you were all eager to hear but i would like to take a moment for the program we -- you know, how much work is but it takes a lot of efforts behind the scenes three people in particular deserve our recognition and.
[applause] >> with their federal partners greece support all across the government. those to the highest levels behind them is a hosta of staff working hard to make our vision a reality. fait que from joining us across the country for a real dialogue how we can prevent use violence. i know our country is in great hands. there a fantastic group of young people. [applause]
you were on the vanguard to protect communities and our kids and we're grateful for all you do it in very glad to have you here with us today. i have a great privilege to introduce our next speaker first week of the job to define the challenge real face every day moving forward with said national conversation about civic trust wow though law enforcement officers are supported it is in new territory for attorney general loretta lynch she worked hard to see that the laws were respected and appel to be sure there were applied she pledged that commitment as the attorney general. said to have a leader of
thanks for the kind introduction and your leadership floor justice programs where steadfast commitment for public safety is truly an outstanding work that you do. also carol mason attorney general assistance the work that the a group does to strengthen individuals with of focus with innovative rand of vital part to give it a just society that all americans deserve but i want to acknowledge dr. bell the president of the family programs for as long standing commitment for this important issue. [applause]
him and i will tell you again what did honor it is for me to be here with all of you and it is a pleasure to have so many devoted public assurgent -- servants and passionate leaders as rededicate ourselves to the safety and security of our nation's children and use. i want to recall its the young people who were here today that they had the privilege of meeting with and to thank you in particular for your activism and advocacy on this compelling issue progress we have seen preventing violence is not just the abstract concept but a clear and pressing need and indeed that requires more than the prosecution's strategy but the approach to see all sides of keeling
neighborhoods, mutual trust to promote well-being is not just lofty goals and they are not unreachable but the tangible pieces of the more prosperous and peaceful society that we seek. last week drive traveled to baltimore in my first trip as the attorney general to meet with law enforcement officers and representatives iceboat to women and men whose took to the streets and spoke to police officers who worked 16 days without a break and concerted offer their own safety and security but of the residents of baltimore. but i think i was most impressed with the young people about nine of them working within their communities to make their city a better place a few of
them seem to know more about civil rights law than some lawyers they were still optimistic despite what happened there optimistic about the future of their city there are a of a testament to the strength of our young people even those that fe's real economic challenges they're making a real and positive difference in serving as an example to others. i hope to they would challenge their peers to do the same because many of those communities across america it is too easy for use to get caught up to give bin to raise troubling status quo. but they are our future it is a distressing reality that a significant majority
of over 60 percent of the nation use have been exposed to crime and violence and abuse as victor lazore witnesses and it can take many forms ando kerr virtually everywhere from the streets of the neighborhoods to the far reaches of cyberspace to whether they learn their lessons to their home where they feel most secure but regardless of how or when exposure to violence can have real and devastating consequences. and development and research has shown if they become victims of abuse the exposure to such behavior makes them more likely to fall behind in school and suffer from anxiety and depression and struggle with drug and alcohol abuse later
in life and altman the more likely to perpetuate the cycle of violence that what m.l. cave was the descending spiral of destruction but that is why summits like this are so important and the work that you do to rally the local stakeholders to increase support for violence prevention with access to family and social services is so critical by the obama administration led by this justice department indicated itself to itself to make the unprecedented commitment and at the heart is a national forum and youth violence prevention with a network of 15 communities and federal agencies that work together to share information from boston to san jose use
prevention and intervention enforcement and strategies to spur progress. through their collaborative efforts we have already seen homicides and violent crime dropped nine out of 10 cities that participated and some cities reported changes of quality life majors like increased retention. the national forum has been complemented by a the violence prevention program that operates in 16 cities nationwide targeting gay violence to build partnerships among law enforcement has service providers and concerned residents and a space organizations. after implementing the public health practices recommended cities have reported reductions of gun
violence and increase of community engagement. with outstanding efforts like these are not only noteworthy but can be duplicated we're striving to bring them to more cities across the country but beyond these three have evidence based interventions to expand our base of knowledge as comprehensive strategies under the childhood initiative with the office of justice programs. we are working with our partners in the private sector including secretary of education and arnie duncan and secretary of labor to end the pipeline that since so many children on a path from the schoolhouse to the jailhouse we speak out from a zero tolerance policies that bar
the doors of opportunity of children who need support leaving them stigmatized leaving them left out and left alone. some communities are vulnerable the requires a targeted effort through the task force to the american indian and alaskan native children to work with tribal communities to bring down the high rates of violence, drug abuse abuse, alcoholism and suicide to develop fresh daybed driven strategies to address these programs together to reach more than 100,000 children who were victims of human trafficking each and every year we are working to avert -- and discourage of modern-day slavery. our office released a $14 million solicitation focused on supporting the male survivors of violence
and with the president's initiative we will rally a coalition of government and private sector leaders to expand opportunities for youth across the nation to demonstrate to young men of color in all people that their country cares about them common values them and is determined to help them reach their full potential. last week the president announced a new independent nonprofit to focus one invaluable support to boys of color at every point from early childhood to high-school graduation to lifelong development. these are vital and ground-breaking efforts but while we made important progress we recognize we have much more work to do
and the government cannot challenge -- conquer these challenges alone. . . >> as i look at this gathering of extraordinary individuals and motivating organizations, i cannot help but be optimistic about all we can accomplish in the days ahead very and i have no doubt that we will meet these challenges and we will be able
to overcome these obstacles and we will create a safer and more just society that all of our young people deserve. i'm confident that with the passion and hard work of the individuals here in this room along with partners and friends around the country, we are going to make new progress and reach new heights and expand the circle of opportunity for young people across america. i want to thank you once again for your dedication to this commitment to this call in your unwavering devotion to the future of the nation and i urge you to keep up the outstanding work and i wish you a productive and successful conference, thank you for allowing me to share a few minutes of it with you today. thank you so very much. [applause]