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WASHINGTON — Airline passengers who get frustrated and kick a wall, throw a suitcase or make a pithy comment to a screener could find themselves in a little-known Homeland Security database.
The Transportation Security Administration says it is keeping records of people who make its screeners feel threatened as part of an effort to prevent workplace violence.
Privacy advocates fear the database could feed government watch lists and subject innocent people to extra airport screening.
"Is this going to be the baby watch list? There's a potential for the misuse of information or the mischaracterization of harmless events as potential threats," American Civil Liberties Union lawyer Michael German said.
A TSA report says the database can include names, birth dates, Social Security numbers, home addresses and phone numbers of people involved in airport incidents, including aggressors, victims and witnesses.
Incidents in the database include threats, bullying or verbal abuse, remarks about death or violence, brandishing a real or fake weapon, intentionally scaring workers or excessive displays of anger such as punching a wall or kicking equipment, the report says.