Despite these concerns, the TSA acquired another 378 and still has plans to buy nearly 1,000 more in the next two years–despite the fact that studies dating back to 2010 revealed the scanners did not work as advertised. “GAO has estimated increases in staffing costs alone, due to doubling the number of AITs that TSA plans to deploy, could add up to $2.4 billion over the expected service life of the AITs,” says the report.

It also accused the TSA of “failing to deploy in-line Explosive Detection Systems in a cost-effective and risk-based manner.” EDS technology is used to screen baggage, and the report indicates that their successful deployment could reduce the number of required baggage screeners “by as much as 78%” Reality check? “However, despite the potential security and economic benefits of in-line baggage screening, GAO found that TSA is struggling to upgrade its deployed fleet of checked baggage-screening machines and that some of TSA’s deployed machines are detecting explosives at standards promulgated in 1998.” In other words, like any other bloated government bureaucracy, the TSA is taking its time in order to keep as many unnecessary workers on the government payroll as long as possible.

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