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Data Security

Cathay Pacific Records Passengers During Flights

Any use of the in-flight entertainment system is logged and CCTV cameras on board each flight record your activity for security purposes.
Cathay Pacific Records Passengers During Flights
Image credit: via PC Mag
Senior Editor
2 min read
This story originally appeared on PCMag

If you take a flight on board a Cathay Pacific aircraft, you are being watched and recorded. Is says so in the newly updated privacy policy.

As CNN reports, the airline updated its privacy policy at the end of July to make it clear passenger activity will be recorded both before and during a flight. That includes using CCTV cameras in the airport and on aircraft to capture footage of individuals.

As the privacy policy states, the information Cathay Pacific collects when you use its products and services includes, "your use of our inflight entertainment system and inflight connectivity, your images captured via CCTV in our airport lounges and aircraft."

When asked about the use of cameras, a spokesperson for the airline confirmed to CNN that, "In line with standard practice and to protect our customers and frontline staff, there are CCTV cameras installed in our airport lounges and onboard aircraft (one camera, positioned near the cockpit door) for security purposes."

Storing such detailed and personal information requires tight security, which Cathay Pacific says it caters to with "commercially reasonable physical, electronic and procedural safeguards." The use of the word "reasonable" is not very reassuring, nor is the fact your data can be transferred to other countries and sit on the servers of the airline's subcontractors. As for data retention, Cathay Pacific will "retain your Personal Data for as long as is necessary."

The airline is not utilizing cameras in the back of seats to spy on passengers, but its record on data security and reliable online booking systems doesn't fill me with confidence. In October last year, the airline disclosed a data breach affecting 9.4 million passengers. Then in late December its booking system started selling $16,000 flights for $675, which it honored. Worse, though, was the fact it happened again just two weeks later.

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