I got the following from Cleveland in response to one of my Freedom of Information Act requests requesting checkpoint video of me defeating the nude body scanners:
Information contained in the Airport security system, including video surveillance tapes at Hopkins Airport, contains security sensitive information that is controlled under 49 C.F.R. parts 15 and 1520. No part of this record may be disclosed to persons without a need to know, as defined in 49 C.F.R. parts 15 and 1520, except with the written permission of the Administrator of the Transportation Security Administration or the Secretary of Transportation. Unauthorized release may result in civil penalty or other action. Additionally, the release of this information is not authorized under the Ohio Public Records law, in that this information is considered security material and represents an exclusion that exists under the law.
It amazes me how anyone could possibly consider a video of a public area to be “sensitive security information” — after all, anyone could have legally taken a video of me at the checkpoint, so why is the government’s video any more sensitive than that?
I sent them an appeal letter, which is required before I sue them for the video. I also discussed the issue with them on the phone, and they told me they’d look into it. We’ll see.