The TSA hasn’t done enough to assess the vulnerability of commercial U.S. airports and also needs to update its national strategy for airport security, according to a report released Tuesday by the Government Accountability Office (GAO).

The report noted that the agency completed a comprehensive risk assessment of perimeter and access-control security in 2013, but said the TSA has been remiss since then when it comes to assessments, even as security breaches by airport workers have become a larger concern.

“TSA has not updated this assessment to reflect changes in the airport security risk environment, such as TSA’s subsequent determination of risk from the insider threat — the potential of rogue aviation workers exploiting their credentials, access, and knowledge of security procedures throughout the airport for personal gain or to inflict damage,” the GAO report says.

Among the insider breaches that have been discovered since 2013 was alleged gun smuggling by workers at Atlanta’s airport.

The TSA sets security standards across the U.S. aviation network, but airports are responsible for the day-to-day work of securing their perimeters and other access points within their facilities.

This week’s GAO report comes as airport security has become an area of increasing public concern, because of the much-discussed long lines at airport checkpoints and because of the Brussels airport bombing in March. The report is not a response to those events, however. It was originally delivered to Congress in March, then altered with the removal of sensitive security information prior to Tuesday’s public dissemination.

The GAO found that despite the completion of that risk assessment in 2013, the TSA has not used the information it acquired during the analysis to update the national strategy for airport security.

In addition, the TSA has not comprehensively assessed the vulnerability of the 437 commercial airports nationwide. Instead, from 2009 through 2015 it conducted vulnerability assessments on just 81 airports.

“While conducting [vulnerability assessments] at all commercial airports may not be feasible given budget and resource constraints, other approaches, such as providing all commercial airports with a self-vulnerability assessment tool, may allow TSA to assess vulnerability at airports system-wide,” the GAO said.


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