Gift and duty-free shops. Magazine stands. Restaurants. All these venues past airport security offer a wealth of options for “‘MacGyver-esque’ attackers” to develop weapons, as demonstrated by a security researcher.
“Can common items that are sold in airports after the security screening be used to build lethal weapons?” Terminal Cornucopia, a new YouTube channel, asks.
Researcher Evan “Treefort” Booth created a channel full of demonstrations answering this question with a resounding “yes.”
“As it turns out, even a marginally ‘MacGyver-esque’ attacker can breeze through terminal gift shops, restaurants, magazine stands and duty-free shops to find everything needed to wage war on an airplane,” the YouTube channel’s description read.
These are the rules Booth follows for his project:
- Only materials that can be sourced inside the terminal after the security screening can be used.
- Only cash and a small, travel-approved multitool can be carried into the terminal.
- Anything in the airport you’d get yelled at for taking or messing with is off limits.
How easy are these weapons to build with airport-only resources? Terminal Cornucopia’s demos can show you.
A spiked club made with magazines, tape, dental floss, a rolled up Constitution souvenir and pencil sharpener shaped like the Washington Monument:
A blowgun made with a double-walled, plastic Starbucks’ cup and straw, AR-Parrot Drone 2.0, Zippo lighters and tape:
A solid, pewter slug made from collectible spoons, tape and aluminum soda cans:
A break-action shotgun made from batteries, a magnetic refrigerator clip, hair dryer, hair band, dental floss, tape, magazines, Axe body spray, a condom, water aluminum cans and ammunition (a.k.a. Red Bull):
A fragmentation grenade made with a stainless steel coffee mug, AA battery, Axe body spray, condom, magazine, dental floss and water:
A crossbow made with a robot grabber toy, magazines, an umbrella, tape, dental floss, double-walled, plastic Starbucks’ cup and straw, and a luggage handle:
You might be wondering about the purpose of posting these videos. A natural question would be “what if terrorists see this?”
“That’s a great question. An even better question is: What if they already know all this?” Booth stated on the Terminal Cornucopia website. “All of these findings have been reported to the Department of Homeland Security (TSA) to help them better detect these types of threats. Furthermore, the next time you fly, you’ll be flying as a more informed consumer (and taxpayer, possibly) — one who is more equipped to demand better, more appropriate airport security.”
Also, in case you are wondering, Booth’s constructions and demonstrations were done in a lab, not an airport.
With this information, Booth offers some advice: “Don’t break the law. Don’t build weapons if you don’t know how to do it safely. Don’t be stupid.”
Check out the Terminal Cornucopia YouTube channel for more demonstrations.