May 5th, 2010
10:12 AM ET

DHS changing no-fly list policy after Times Square plot

The Department of Homeland Security is changing its no-fly list update policies to prevent a repeat of what happened Monday, when the suspect in the Times Square attempted bombing was allowed to board a plane despite his name being on the no-fly list, a DHS official told CNN Wednesday.

The official said the Transportation Security Administration will require airlines to check the no-fly list within two hours of being electronically notified of additions or changes. Previously, airlines were required to re-check the list within 24 hours.

Faisal Shahzad, who has been charged in connection with the attempted bombing in Times Square, was able to board Emirates Flight 202 late Monday despite being put on a no-fly list earlier in the day. He made his reservation by phone as he drove to the airport just hours before the flight, investigators said. When he paid for his ticket in cash at the ticket counter, the airline had not refreshed its information so his name did not raise any red flags, a senior counterterrorism official told CNN.

soundoff (281 Responses)
  1. DAVID

    JUST ANOTHER SNAFU IN THE NO FLY LIST. HELL I AM AN AMERICAN CITIZEN, WORK FOR THE FEDERAL GOVT AND HAVE TO GO THRU EXTRA SCREENING EVERYTIME I FLY. SUPPLIED EVER THINK I CAN THINK OF AND STILL ON THE LIST. GUESS I NEED TO SUBMIT A PUBIC HAIR TO BE ANALYZED.

    May 5, 2010 at 11:52 am | Report abuse |
  2. mindest

    Profiling is a good idea and I do not mean by skin tone. Anyone with a Uni-brow or one of those lacky, little boy beards – you know the kind, the beard does not attach to the mustache. Anyone also, NOT carrying personal hygene items in their carryon is an indicator!

    May 5, 2010 at 11:52 am | Report abuse |
  3. Doug

    A lot of you criticize this as if the Patriot Act is some massive evil against your individual liberty. Then you decry the ineffectiveness of the system for allowing terrorists through while preventing grandma and 2 year old grandchild from boarding. You can't hold both positions, since the only solution to the latter is more of the former in the form of racial profiling.

    May 5, 2010 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
  4. Shriman

    The IED didn't go off, no one got killed, the suspect was arrested, red flags (because the tkt was paid with cash) did go up in time. As for enabling a real-time 2-hourly (let alone constant!) refresh of the no-fly list everywhere in the US, I don't think the folks requesting this have the faintest idea what it enatails from the standpoint of manpower, infrastructrure & technology!

    While it's appropriate to seek improvement constantly, this continuous destructive criticism of law enforcement is pointless. I'd urge you to come forward if you have tangible, specific strategies/tactics to improve airport & security in public places. Otherwise, please thank the ones that did do their jobs & move on!

    May 5, 2010 at 11:55 am | Report abuse |
  5. dancybear

    DHS had many chances to pick this guy up but because he was not a forty year old white
    he was ignored. Put all Muslims on a no fly list and fire Dunbpalitano!!

    May 5, 2010 at 11:56 am | Report abuse |
  6. AL

    @Mary – I have a job, I do it. You havea job, you do it. It's nice to get a thank you every now and again. One of the gov'ts jobs is to protect us...just like I enjoy getting a "thanks" for a job well done, I also enjoy giving it. Or put it this way – how would you like it if nobody ever said "thank you" for a job well-done on your part?

    On a side note – the airlines/TSA failed at this juncture. DHS succeeded by catching the guy on their own initiative.

    May 5, 2010 at 11:56 am | Report abuse |
  7. Alan Rubinstein

    A two hour window for checking the no-fly list is clearly inadequate. The technology must be in place for the alrlines to check the list immediately prior to take-off.

    May 5, 2010 at 11:57 am | Report abuse |
  8. mindest

    Bet this latest Paki-creep had an FHA Home loan and Federal Student Loan even before he was handed US citizenship !

    May 5, 2010 at 11:57 am | Report abuse |
  9. AL

    @dancybear – Updating the list is how they directly notify all applicable departments. To send an extra "fax" or "email" would not only be extremely time consuming, but it would not gaurantee the information gets into the correct hands. Great so a fax got in, and now it is sitting on the fax machine, or on someones desk...do you realize how long it would take to make sure that ONE fax gets sent to each and every security checkpoint and terminal in an airport? Hence they have this nice computerized list, that when updated notifies EVERY single checkpoint and terminal in the airport...the failure came because the list is not live (why i dont know), and is only updated once every 24 hours.

    It's not hard to understand.

    May 5, 2010 at 11:58 am | Report abuse |
  10. Red Ferrari

    with the fever pitch in this chatroom, I am surprised anarchy and revolution have not broken out in this failed country. It is only a matter of when the shi+ hits the fan until this happens! In a way, I am glad to see it. We need a revolution to get CHANGE at this time! It is a cinch it ain't gonna happen on the yo-yo in charge's watch!

    May 5, 2010 at 12:00 pm | Report abuse |
  11. blah

    it's defiinitely an inconvenience for sure. But that's the price to pay to fly safely. Do you really think there has not been another terrorist attack on america since 9-11 because they didn't try? and do you really think they would tell you everytime the system works and they successfully stop someone from doing an attack? if they stop a 4 year old ofcourse the media will be all over it. and to be honest it has to do more with the agent not wanting to lose his job for not following procedures and use his judgement instead. stop whining , you wouldn't be if you were no plane with a bomb being detonated at 30000 in the air, will see how much freedom/liberty you think you have at that point.

    May 5, 2010 at 12:01 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Janell

    The problem is not the airlines but U.S. Customs. How did he get through customs to get on flight to Dubai in the first place. When you go to the international flight concourse you have to go through customs. THEY BLEW IT! The airlines would be the 2nd level of protection. Why no outcry about goverment agency blowing it 1st?

    May 5, 2010 at 12:02 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Douglas A. Thompson, MA

    I'll say it again.

    A lot of you criticize this as if the Patriot Act is some massive evil against your individual liberty. Then you decry the ineffectiveness of the system for allowing terrorists through while preventing grandma and 2 year old grandchild from boarding. You can't hold both positions, since the only solution to the latter is more of the former in the form of racial profiling.

    May 5, 2010 at 12:02 pm | Report abuse |
  14. mindest

    if a ATM can immediately deduct from your checking account and police can immediately send out a national apb – why can't no fly update be immediate?

    May 5, 2010 at 12:03 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Red Ferrari

    THE PROBLEM IS THAT THERE ARE NO SERIOUS LAWS ON THE BOOKS TO HANDLE CRIME IN THIS COUNTRY. IT HAS BEEN THAT WAY FOR MANY YEARS, BUT NOW THE TYPE OF CRIMES GOING DOWN WARRANT TOUGH PUNISHMENT MORE THAN EVER BEFORE. THAT IS THE PROBLEM...

    May 5, 2010 at 12:03 pm | Report abuse |
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