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PreCheck Program Speeds Up Security At Dulles

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TSA administrator John Pistole lauded the PreCheck program and its dedicated line at Dulles
Wayan Vota: http://www.flickr.com/photos/dcmetroblogger/7830394298/
TSA administrator John Pistole lauded the PreCheck program and its dedicated line at Dulles

Remember how quickly you'd get through airport security before 9/11? Those speeds are returning to Dulles International Airport.

Frequent flier Neal Lassila, a businessman on his way to L.A, took just 90 seconds to get through airport security, thanks to the TSA's PreCheck program, now operating in 26 airports. At Dulles, they just installed the first stand-alone security gate for PreCheck fliers in the country.

"Oh, it's game-changing, amazing. It's the best," says Lassila. "I went through it in L.A. on the way out, and it honestly has changed everything."

Lassila didn't have to take off his shoes or belt, or even open his bag at the security checkpoint. The PreCheck system "pre-screened" him when Lassila applied for the TSA program through his airline. His personal known traveler number is now embedded in the bar code of his boarding pass.

"This is just so much better," says Lassila.

Administrator John Pistole says the program makes sense for people who fly regularly.

"TSA PreCheck is one of several-risk based, intelligence driven measures helping TSA move away from that one-size-fits-all construct that was necessary after 9/11," says Pistole.

Airlines are contacting frequent fliers, offering applications. You can sign up yourself through the U.S. Customs and Border Protection's Global Entry program. With that option, you apply online, submit some personal information, and then follow-up with an in-person interview that let's the government verify your identity.

The TSA hopes to have PreCheck at 35 airports by the end of the year.

Correction: The original version of this story mis-identified the agency that manages the Global Entry program. Global Entry is a program managed by U.S. Customs and Border Protection.  

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