ISIS' disconcerting invention

Terrorist organizations find ways to place undetectable bombs in electronic devices.

Chana Roberts,

Airport security
Airport security

US intelligence and law enforcement agencies believe ISIS, Al Qaeda, and other terrorist organizations have developed ways to plant explosives which can evade standard security screening methods, into electronic devices, CNN reported.

US President Donald Trump on March 21 ordered banning travelers flying out of ten airports in eight Middle Eastern and African countries from carrying laptops and other electronic devices larger than a cell phone and to place the devices in their luggage . According to intelligence agencies, these countries presented a greater threat, and the US government has more confidence in screening techniques used in the US and Europe.

The eight countries are Egypt (Cairo), Jordan (Amman), Kuwait (Kuwait City), Morocco (Casablanca), Qatar (Doha), Saudi Arabia (Jeddah and Riyadh), Turkey (Istanbul) and the United Arab Emirates (Abu Dhabi and Dubai).

Britain implemented a similar ban earlier this month, including two additional countries not on the US list.

According to US intelligence officials, detonating an explosive is harder to do remotely, and a device detonated in the cargo section will cause less damage than one detonated in the cabin area.

However, cell phones have often been used to remotely detonate explosives, and it is not clear how effective placing the devices in the luggage compartment will be.

Secure Point Technologies President Robert Liscouski said, "We don't have the same level of confidence in other areas of the world because we don't have the government bodies and stature to assure compliance."

According to CNN, the FBI is concerned the current laptop bombs will be more difficult to detect than previous versions.

In a statement, the US Department of Homeland Security said, "As a matter of policy, we do not publicly discuss specific intelligence information. However, evaluated intelligence indicates that terrorist groups continue to target commercial aviation, to include smuggling explosive devices in electronics."

"The U.S. government continually re-assesses existing intelligence and collects new intelligence. This allows DHS and TSA to constantly evaluate our aviation security processes and policies and make enhancements when they are deemed necessary to keep passengers safe.

"As always, all air travelers are subject to a robust security system that employs multiple layers of security, both seen and unseen."

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said, "Terrorist groups continue to target commercial aviation and are aggressive in pursuing innovative methods to undertake their attacks to include smuggling explosive devices in consumer objects."

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