MSNBC says that the TSA is hinting hard that CAPPS II is dead. Except when it isn't:
Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge said officials had all but scrapped plans for the controversial Computer Assisted Passenger Prescreening System, known as CAPPS II, which has come under criticism from privacy advocates and some members of Congress.
Asked whether the program could be considered dead, Ridge jokingly gestured as if he were driving a stake through its head and said: “Yes,” USA Today reported.
Sounds good, right? Except this is just like when they killed the Poindexter TIA program: (but really didn't1):
Ridge said a new program with a different name might be developed to replace CAPPS II. It could be replaced by a new “registered traveler” program if enough people volunteer to provide personal information, the report said.
So Registered Traveller + secret program to be (not) announced = CAPPS III. Oh joy.
Meanwhile, it will be interesting to see if the government argues that Frontier Travel v. TSA is now moot.
1 When the program went 'black' they just stopped worrying about privacy:
“But when the Information Awareness Office was disbanded and the work on many parts of TIA—which is ongoing—became classified, the privacy work stopped, Poindexter said.
“The privacy work was part of what was cancelled,” he said. “But I think it should continue. And I think that eventually it will be continued. I'm an optimist.”
EFF has a nice section on CAPPS II as well.