The Aviation and Transportation Security Act created the Transportation Security Agency on November 19, 2001. The government created the TSA as a direct response to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.
The TSA's primary role is to provide security against terrorist attacks at airports and on flights. Throughout 2002, the agency hired more than 60,000 employees, making it the largest government deployment of personnel since World War II. Many of these agents work at security points in airports, but the agency is also responsible for handling intelligence. The agency also employs Federal Air Marshal, who are armed agents trained to stop attempted hijackings and other potential threats to flights.