In an alarming revelation that could send shivers down the spine of aviation security managers, Interpol has said about 40,000 people criss-crossed the globe with lost or stolen travel documents in the recent past.
“Terrorists and dangerous criminals continue to move from one country to another on stolen, falsified or lost documents,” Interpol chief Ronald K Noble said in an interview in Singapore.
Maintaining that the airline industry faced the “maximum threat” and “continues to be the prime target”, he said, “Over past several months, we have scrutinised 490 million passports and identified about 40,000 such documents which were lost or stolen. Travelling with such documents is the biggest threat (to aviation).”
These 40,000 travel documents belonged to 26 countries which have since been informed by the Interpol, Noble said.