Monday, 20 October 2003
Senators ask questions about jetBlue
In a letter sent Friday, 17 October 2003, to Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld, three members of the US Senate are demanding answers from the Department of Defense to some (but by no means all) of the many lingering questions about the acquisition and use by a DoD subcontractor, "Torch Concepts, Inc.", of jetBlue Airways' entire database of reservation records.
Among the questions not asked in the Senators' letter are those about the relationship of the Torch Concepts subcontract to the DARPA's Total Information Awareness program. (According to a press release formerly posted on the Torch Concepts Web site, the prime contractor was SRS Technologies, the exclusive prime IT contractor to DARPA for the TIA program. And the Army has referred FOIA requests related to the use of jetBlue reservation data to the office that handles FOIA requests related to TIA and other DARPA programs.)
Also not yet asked by the Senators are any of the questions about the other CAPPS-II tests with real passenger data, as admitted to by Airline Automation, Inc. and as reported by myself and the Times (London).
We aren't likely to get to the bottom of the jetBlue scandal, or the (thus far less widely publicized) scandal about the other CAPPS-II tests with real passneger data in 2001-2002 (and perhaps right now) without a full-fledged Congressional investigation. This letter isn't it, but it's a positive step. We can only hope that the Senate doesn't just ask questions, but insists on real (and true) answers.Link | Posted by Edward on Monday, 20 October 2003, 21:17 ( 9:17 PM)