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01/18/2013 11:54 am ET Updated Jan 18, 2013

TSA Removing Some Body Scanners From US Airports

Call it the unvasion of the body scanners.

The Transportation Security Administration is set to pull more than 100 of its controversial body-scanning machines from airports across the U.S. after the company that makes the machines failed to meet a congressional deadline to upgrade them, Bloomberg reports.

The debate involved Rapiscan's backscatter X-ray machines, which the company has been unable to update despite privacy concerns raised by agency critics, many of whom claim the photos of passengers entering the machines are too revealing.

The TSA had already pulled 76 of the machines and the latest announcement guarantees that another 174 will be mothballed, the agency's assistant administrator for acquisitions told Bloomberg.

Even with more than 200 machines leaving checkpoints, it's not the end for the controversial screening procedure. The TSA will still use its millimeter wave scanners, which use a different type of technology and which critics say are also unreliable.

A March 2012 YouTube video went viral after it purported to show how to defeat the high-tech scanners. The best way to defeat them, it turned out, was to congressionally mandate upgrades. Problem solved.

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