Frequent travelers may be used to finding an official note from the Transportation Security Administration alerting them that their checked bags have been searched, but rarely does the TSA take the opportunity to get a little more — or a lot more — personal with travelers.
But that’s what one blogger said a TSA officer did based on an unusual note she found in her luggage today. Jill Filipovic, a blogger at Feministe.us, tweeted a picture of the TSA notification on which, alongside the official form, someone had scrawled “GET YOUR FREAK ON GIRL” in big capital letters.
“Just unpacked my suitcase and found this note from TSA,” Filipovic tweeted. “Guess they discovered a ‘personal item’ in my bag. Wow.”
Attempting to discreetly explain the “personal item” to commenters on Feministe, Filipovic wrote it was “the most basic lady-thing you can imagine.”
Filipovic had traveled from Newark, New Jersey, to Dublin, Ireland, over the weekend and had just this morning opened her luggage. She said that except for when the bag was checked — from the time she packed to the time she unpacked — she had been with the bag, meaning it was unlikely an elaborate practical prank by a friend. She said the fact that the note was left on the TSA notice led her to believe a TSA officer had written it.
A spokesperson for the TSA said that they are “one of several entities” that handle checked bags and that at this time there is “no concrete evidence who wrote the note.”
Still, the TSA said that “if inappropriate conduct is discovered, TSA [will take] appropriate disciplinary action.”
Initially, Filipovic wrote on her blog that the note was “total violation of privacy, wildly inappropriate and clearly not OK, but I also just died laughing in my hotel room.”
But upon further reflection, Filipovic told ABC News she believed it to be “offensive” and said she’d likely be filing a complaint with the TSA once she returns to the U.S.
“I hope they do see the complaint, they’ll look into it and remind their staff that going through people’s personal belongings is a responsibility that should be treated with some modicum of professionalism,” Filipovic said.
The TSA said it opens checked bags for hand inspections if any alarms are sounded during the screening process and the TSA inserts the inspection card after the search.
[CIM Comment: I have had a clothing bag checked and note left, although not as exciting, that contained only 2 or three suites and shirts. Wondering what alarms they might have set off? Sorry TSA, fail again, not buying it. Hey parents, these are the pervs you want groping your small children at airports and all the ever growing checkpoints?]