Former CIA Officer Jason Hanson Reveals...

Spy Secrets That Can

Save Your Life

Get Out Alive

Mailbag Monday

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I have a bullet proof bug out bag (bullet proof panel in a zippered pocket in the back). My question is can I make it through airport security and fly with this bag both in the U.S. and abroad?

-From Todd G.

Answer: I have flown all over the US with a bulletproof panel in my bag and have never had an issue. TSA says body armor is allowed in carry-on and checked bags.

As for traveling internationally, I would call the specific international airport you are traveling to. The laws will vary from country to country. The last thing you want is to be caught in a foreign country where body armor could be illegal.


I went to a neighborhood mom-and-pop store the other day and they no longer accept cash. Instead of saving up cold hard cash should I use something like Visa gift cards?

-From Russ L.

Answer: When the pandemic started, some businesses stopped accepting cash to slow the spread of germs. But they have realized there are more advantages for them to not dealing with cash.

For example, it’s not attractive to robbers and cuts down on employee theft.

Buying Visa gift cards is a good option and you could certainly do that.

However, cash is still king. If you can’t turn the Visa gift cards into cash, they could become worthless. So, I would still always have a large amount of cash on hand for an emergency and keep it stored in a fireproof safe.


What do you think about gun safes that open with an RFID signal? Like the ones that open if you get close and are wearing the connected watch? Would you buy one?

-From Alex B.

Answer: I don’t like RFID or fingerprint access safes. I don’t own either of these types of safes. I’ve heard too many horror stories of people not being able to open them because their finger was too dry, too sweaty, too dirty, etc.

Or they wouldn’t open because the batteries were dead in the RFID watch or safe. There are a lot of things that can go wrong with these types of safes.

Just too much technology that can break down and cause your safe not to open when you need it most.

My safes do not have any electronics to get into them.


If you were going to leave the U.S. and move to another country where would you go?

-From Beth W.

Answer: Well, I would never leave. There is no other country I would rather live in than the U.S. While we have our problems there is not a country that will give you the freedoms and liberties that we enjoy.

But, if you want an answer, I would go to Puerto Rico. Yes, I know it’s not another country and it’s a US territory, but that is where I would go. If you set things up right, you can pay insanely low taxes like 4%.


My father recently passed and I’m going through his guns. I found a few magazines that my mom said have sat loaded in the safe for five years. Is it still safe to use these magazines? Will the spring be strong enough to push up the rounds?

-From Matt F.

Answer: It’s hard to say for sure if the spring will weaken because there are a lot of factors that come into play.

First, is the magazine a quality brand? Or is it a cheap aftermarket magazine? Also, moisture, corrosion, dust, and other factors can affect how well the spring works.

If you are using a quality magazine such as Magpul or Glock factory or Sig factory, etc., and the magazine is stored in a clean, dry place, then it should last many years even if loaded.

But, you will be able to tell if the spring is bad if it’s too easy to load ammo. I would take the rounds out and then reload the magazine to see how the spring feels.


Is storing distilled water for survival better than bottled spring water?

-From Casey L.

Answer: Spring water is going to be better because it still has its minerals. Distilled water doesn’t. Now, in a survival situation water is water.

My point is, if the only water you had was distilled, I wouldn’t hesitate to drink it. Also, distilled water is better for some folks with medical conditions.

No matter what water you use for long-term storage, make sure you have a quality water filter just in case the water has been sitting for a long time and somehow gets contaminated.

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