TSA fails most tests in latest undercover operation at US airports

In recent undercover tests of multiple airport security checkpoints by the Department of Homeland Security, inspectors said screeners, their equipment or their procedures failed more than half of the time, according to a source familiar with the classified report.

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When ABC News asked the source familiar with the report if the failure rate was 80 percent, the response was, “You are in the ballpark.”

In a public hearing following a private, classified briefing to the House Committee on Homeland Security, members of Congress called the failures by the Transportation Security Administration “disturbing.”

Rep. Mike Rogers went as far as to tell TSA Administrator David Pekoske, “This agency that you run is broken badly and it needs your attention.”

Pekoske was confirmed by the Senate this summer.

Inspectors “identified vulnerabilities with TSA’s screener performance, screening equipment, and associated procedures,” according to a statement from the Department of Homeland Security.

The statement adds that the findings remain classified but that eight recommendations have been made to TSA to improve checkpoint security. It is not clear what those recommendations are.

The news of the failure comes two years after ABC News reported that secret teams from DHS found that TSA failed 95 percent of the time to stop inspectors from covertly smuggling weapons or explosive materials through screening.

That report led to major changes ordered at TSA by then-Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson. The agency opened a training academy for transportation security officers and changed procedures to reduce long lines.

While still being described by lawmakers as a poor performance, TSA performed better in this round of testing than two years ago, according to the source familiar with the report.

In the public hearing today on Capitol Hill, members…

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