The TSA's master luggage key can now be 3D printed from the internet

TSA officers
(Image credit: SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)

Since 2013, the TSA has demanded random access to all checked luggage, and to avoid breaking travelers' bags, it encouraged the use of locks the agency could open with a master key. This sounds like a smart security idea in theory — until you remember that the internet and 3D printing exist.

The key design was leaked online via a quickly deleted Washington Post photograph last fall; since then, online collaborators have perfected the 3D printer specs to replicate the master key. Here's a video of one such key in action:

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The TSA has not commented on this security breach.

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Bonnie Kristian

Bonnie Kristian was a deputy editor and acting editor-in-chief of TheWeek.com. She is a columnist at Christianity Today and author of Untrustworthy: The Knowledge Crisis Breaking Our Brains, Polluting Our Politics, and Corrupting Christian Community (forthcoming 2022) and A Flexible Faith: Rethinking What It Means to Follow Jesus Today (2018). Her writing has also appeared at Time Magazine, CNN, USA Today, Newsweek, the Los Angeles Times, and The American Conservative, among other outlets.