Privacy group, TSA spar again over full-body scanners

Still, EPIC's findings are unlikely to quiet the country's most ferocious privacy advocates, who have stressed for months now that full-body scanners are inappropriate solutions to the country's security needs.

Some of their most resonant criticisms appear in the more than 40 complaints posted on EPIC's Web site. For example, at least one passenger expressed fears the scanners' radiation levels could harm their pregnancy. Others expressed concern that TSA workers could have misused the scanners' full-body images, according to EPIC's documents.

Still more told TSA officials they were unaware they could request a pat down instead of a full-body scan, even though the TSA has repeatedly stressed that option is available. Another group of passengers fretted the fact their children had to pass through those screens.

EPIC is using those documents, obtained this week from a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request, as further evidence the scanners should be banned. But while TSA said it would heed those criticisms, the agency nonetheless did not signal it planned to revise its goal of installing hundreds of new advanced-imaging devices at major airports by the end of 2010.

"TSA takes passenger questions and concerns seriously and has multiple methods of receiving feedback from the traveling public to include the TSA Contact Center and Got Feedback program at each airport," the statement said.