Hats off to Israel. As usual they are eons ahead of the rest of us when it comes to air travel security.
Ever since Richard-What's-His-Name, the so-called shoe bomber, tried to light up his sneaks mid-flight (right after 9/11), the rest of us have been sentenced to the tedious and demeaning ritual of de-nuding our feet at airport security checkpoints.
Let me count the ways that this is a major pain for road warriors.
1. It's a time suck.
2. It requires shoe selection strategy for the flight (Cowboy boots that require sitting in the floor and straining to pull them off with your face beet red - no! Slip-on loafers and flats - yes!)
3. Stinky feet. 'Nuf said.
4. One has to wonder what kind of cooties your feet can pick up off the airport floor through panty hose or thin socks (or no socks).
5. Who wants to shed shoes in front of co-workers that are also travelmates?
6. Isn't it safe to say we all work with a few people WE KNOW that we have no desire to see their feet, either.
MagShoe, sold by IDO Security, costs about $5000. Travelers simply step into it (with their shoes on) and MagShoe scans both foot and shoe for fishy stuff.
The Israelis are one of the the few countries, so far, using MagShoe. Apparantly the Budapest airport is using it, as well. $5000 sounds like chump change to me when you consider the additional hours airports are paying security staff to supervise passengers to hand over there shoes for inspection.
Besides if Budapest can afford it; please explain to me how LAX, Atlanta, JFK, etc.can't?
Last updated: Oct 15, 2008
RENEE ORICCHIO is a technology writer and former supervising news producer for CNN Financial News. She has been covering the computer industry since 1987. @oricchio