Airport Pat Downs to Get a Little More Personal

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    ARLINGTON, VA - DECEMBER 30: Transportation Security Administration Security Officer Nyamsi Tchapleu looks at images created by a "backscatter" scanner during a demonstration at the Transportation Security Administration's Systems Integration Facility at Ronald Reagan National Airport December 30, 2009 in Arlington, Virginia. Backscatter technology uses low level x-rays to create a two-sided image. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Nyamsi Tchapleu

    Pat downs at the airport are going to get  a little more thorough -- and personal -- after the Transportation Security Administration approved a new slide of the hand method instead of the traditional pat down.

    TSA agents will use the front of their hands in searches, and the new process will include an agent running his or her hand up the inside of a passenger's leg, NBC News reported today.

    The reason for the new method was not revealed, but the change comes the same day the TSA rolled out new high-tech body scanners at Newark International Airport.

    The machine create a computerized image of a person's body and give screeners the ability to check for weapons.

    Pat downs are used on passengers who opt out of full-body scanner technology, as well as those that set off walk-through metal detectors or are selected for a random search.

    The scanners debuted at Kennedy Airport last week. There currently are more than 300 of them in use at 65 airports around the country.

    TSA officials will be at Newark Liberty Airport on Thursday to demonstrate the machines and procedures to protect passengers' privacy.

    The TSA says the technology is optional for all passengers.