Potential Indicators of Terrorist/Criminal Activity Related to Flight Simulator Access for Pilot Training

What Should I Consider Suspicious?

Behavior Indicators

  • Associate or relative of a known terrorist or extremist organization
  • Seeks to pay cash for flight simulator sessions
  • Threatening comments and threats of violence against the US or individuals
  • Criminal activity and arrests
  • Aviation knowledge inconsistent with alleged/reported flight experience
  • No pilot’s license
  • Requests for specific or specialty simulator routes or instructions that are inconsistent with commercial flight (e.g., flying low altitude, disabling transponders in-flight, disabling cockpit door lockout procedures)
  • Wears a crew member uniform or possesses employee credentials for an airline not listed on their resume
  • Wears a crew member uniform of an airline without corroborating credentials
  • Unfamiliarity with aviation terms or flight controls
  • Students emphasizing accelerated completion of training
  • Not affiliated with an airline, flight school, or known flight instructor
  • Flight hours and/or resume inconsistencies
  • Minimal flight experience in any type of aircraft
  • Minimal experience in similar flight simulator
  • Threats, coercion, or attempts to bribe trainers for certifications
  • Seeks flight simulator sessions to deal with fear of flying or similar phobias
  • Significantly altered appearance (shaving beard, hair color, style of dress)
  • Burns on hands or body, chemical bleaching of skin or hair
  • Nervous or secretive behavior, sweating, avoids eye contact
  • Unemployed with little or no financial support
  • Training sponsored by groups or agencies not normally associated with flying

Note: It is important to remember that just because someone’s speech, actions, beliefs, appearance, or way of life is different, it does not mean that he or she is suspicious.

What Should I Do?

Be Part of the Solution

  • Require valid ID from all new customers.
  • Keep records of purchases.
  • Talk to customers, ask questions, and listen to and observe their responses.
  • Watch for people and actions that are out of place.
  • Make note of suspicious statements, people, and/or vehicles.
  • If something seems wrong, notify law enforcement authorities.

Do not jeopardize your safety or the safety of others.

Preventing terrorism is a community effort. By learning what to look for, you can make a positive contribution in the fight against terrorism. The partnership between the community and law enforcement is essential to the success of anti-terrorism efforts.

Some of the activities, taken individually, could be innocent and must be examined by law enforcement professionals in a larger context to determine whether there is a basis to investigate. The activities outlined on this handout are by no means all-inclusive but have been compiled from a review of terrorist events over several years.


Osceola County Sheriff’s Office
407-348-2222