If you have flown in the past few years it is likely you have come across the TSA "randomizer" which directs you either to the right or left. What you may not have known is that this simple app cost the TSA $1.4 million of your money.
We know this thanks to developer Kevin Burke, who submitted a Freedom of Information Act request asking for details about the app. And if you think paying over $336,000 for an app like this is ridiculous, well, that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
The contract for the TSA Randomizer app was won by IBM. The total paid for the project is actually $1.4 million, but the cost is not broken down in the documents Burke received in response to his request. It could be IBM supplied all the iPads and training as well as the app itself. Even so, the cost of the project is crazy. It’s an app that is just randomly selects left or right.
I understand that software used for security checks at airports must be rigorously tested and reviewed, but I have a hard time believing such checks cost $1.4 million. In fact, I’m sure there’s many reputable developers out there who’d supply the TSA with the same app for a few thousand dollars.