09-May-05 07:43 US to spend billions more to alter security systems - NY Times According to the New York Times, after spending more than $4.5 bln on screening devices to monitor the nation's ports, borders, airports, mail and air, the federal govt is moving to replace or alter much of the antiterrorism equipment, concluding that it is ineffective, unreliable or too expensive to operate. Many of the monitoring tools, intended to detect guns, explosives, and nuclear and biological weapons, were bought during the blitz in security spending after the 9/11 attacks. In its effort to create a virtual shield around America, the Department of Homeland Security now plans to spend billions of dollars more. Although some changes are being made because of technology that has emerged in the last couple of years, many of them are planned because devices currently in use have done little to improve the nation's security, according to a review of agency documents and interviews with federal officials and outside experts. "Everyone was standing in line with their silver bullets to make us more secure after 9/11," said Randall J. Larsen, a retired Air Force colonel and former govt adviser on scientific issues. "We bought a lot of stuff off the shelf that wasn't effective.