Security Synergy

Tuesday, 23 July 2002, 11:46 AM EST

Executives usually don't look to the government for help with business-technology goals. But some have found surprising synergies between the Bush administration's homeland-defense strategy and their own efforts, even though they worry about the costs of government mandates.

Continental Airlines Inc. in Houston began developing an electronic system to match passengers with their bags in the spring of last year, months before the passage of the Transportation Security Act in November. Starting this September, a ramp employee will use a handheld device to scan a checked bag's bar-coded tag, then the worker will wait to place the bag on the plane until its owner's ticket, which contains a matching bar code, is scanned at the boarding gate.

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