Recommended Practice

Identifying Suspicious Behavior in Mass Transit


This Recommended Practice establishes minimum guidelines for identifying suspicious behavior in mass transit.

Document History
Document Number Version Publication Date Publication Related Information
APTA SS-SRM-RP-009-09 Rev. 1 09/25/2020 Published Current
APTA SS-SRM-RP-009-09 10/15/2009 Published Superseded


identifying, security, suspicious behavior, suspicious, transit


 In a post-September 11 era, securing transit agencies against terrorism is a priority. Transit agencies by nature are open and easily accessible by the public, and thereby are easily accessible by terrorists and potential criminals. It is impractical for transit agencies to use the screening practices used in airports. Terrorists and criminals could be of any race, color, gender, religion, ethnicity, or national origin. Selective screening of passengers based only on these characteristics is profiling and is unconstitutional and unlawful. An acceptable method of securing transit agencies is to monitor and identify suspicious behavior. This  Recommended Practice provides guidance and procedural guidelines for identifying suspicious behavior and potentially criminal activity. It includes criteria for identifying basic behavioral characteristics of possible criminals and/or terrorists.

​Get Involved

Want to participate in development of this document? Join the Working Group or Learn More

Related Documents

​ ​​

Print Friendly, PDF & Email