The proliferation of airport body scanners will spark a flurry of low-grade porn, internet conspiracy theorists claimed last week.
But officials at Manchester Airport, where full body scanning is already due to be tested, have been quick to dismiss this as urban myth. Who to ignore?
A number of websites have suggested it is a simple enough matter to transform the slightly abstract, solarised images currently taken by airport scanners and turn them into slightly fuzzed smut.
This was the story that started to appear last week on sites such as Prison Planet, and which has been gaining ground across the world by the usual process of internet osmosis.
Manchester’s officials have countered, pointing out that the images being bounced around the net as examples of the alleged threat to personal privacy are nothing like the images created by scanning – and that no images are ever saved within the system.
“There is simply no potential for images captured by the scanners to be reversed,” a spokesman stated. “This very much looks to be a scare story. Besides, images taken by the scanners are not ever saved to any form of permanent medium, so there is no scope for images to be played with in this way.”
The spokesman also confirmed that the scheme currently being piloted at Manchester airport will not involve the scanning of any children under the age of 18.