The Eyes Have It: Airport Security Looks To Facial Recognition Technology

by Richard D’Ambrosio
The Eyes Have It: Airport Security Looks To Facial Recognition Technology


Imagine a day when instead of looking at a photo in your passport, airport officials just look at your face.

Customs and Border Protection (CBP) already is considering using facial recognition software to track airline passengers at American airports, and Delta Airlines this week said it is making airport biometrics a key priority.

In a first for U.S. carriers, Delta will introduce four self-service bag drop machines at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport equipped with facial recognition technology this summer. The machines will match customers with their passport photos through identification verification.

In a press statement, Delta senior vice president for airport customer service and cargo Gareth Joyce said, "This is the next step in curating an airport experience that integrates thoughtful innovation from start to finish. We're making travel easier than ever for our customers and continuing to deliver a leading customer experience."

At his keynote presentation at the ConnectID conference in Washington in early May, meanwhile, CBP deputy assistant commissioner John Wagner discussed the CBP’s “Biometric Exit” program, which helps identify visitors traveling to and from the United States on a visa.

The program is designed to capture facial images, images of a traveler’s iris, and fingerprints, and match them with images from passports and visa applications. It has been tested on some U.S. citizens returning on international flights at U.S. airports, including Washington Dulles and JFK International in New York, reports The Verge, an online technology and science publication.

“We’re going to build this for [Biometric] Exit. We’re out of time, we have to,” Wagner told the crowd, according to a report from The Verge. “But why not make this available to everyone? Why not look to drive the innovation across the entire airport experience? As soon as you check in for arrivals or departure, we’re going to stage your photo in that database. We want to make it available for every transaction in the airport where you have to show an ID today.”

The Biometric Exit program has been part of U.S. immigration law in some form since 1996, but has been slow to develop. President Trump has been trying to fast track the project through his immigrations executive orders, and CBP reportedly has settled on facial recognition to implement the program.

Still, facial recognition would not be an easy program to apply across an entire airport. In one recent test of 48,000 faces, about a quarter of flagged suspects were not detected. Lighting, facial expressions and other factors can impede facial recognition goals. Also, capturing facial images and other biometric data concerns privacy advocates, including some members of Congress.

  0
  0
Tip of the Day
Daily Top List

Five Places to Go for Spring Travel

1. Carlsbad, Calif.

2. Aspen, Colo.

3. Kauai, Hawaii.

4. Cabo San Lucas

5. Washington, D.C.

Source: Forbes

TMR THIS WEEK
http://services.travelsavers.com/AMGService.svc/REST/GetImage?ImageID=e0eb53ad-f047-e811-ba59-782bcb66a2f2

Must-See Mediterranean Boutique Ports, Sans the Crowds

Sponsored by Seabourn Cruise Lines

As summer travel heats up, exploring lesser-known seaside towns delivers an intimate and romantic experience, minus the throngs of tourists often found at larger commercial ports. 

TMR Recommendations
Top Stories
Southwest Cancels Dozens of Flights as FAA Orders Engine Inspections
Southwest Cancels Dozens of Flights as FAA Orders Engine Inspections

The news comes after the deadly accident aboard one of its flights last week.

Southwest Airlines Steps Up Engine Inspections Following Deadly Accident
Southwest Airlines Steps Up Engine Inspections Following Deadly Accident

This week’s tragic accident puts an end to a nearly decade-long stretch of zero fatalities aboard commercial flights on U.S. carriers.

'60 Minutes' Exposé About Allegiant Stirs Up Agents and Industry Officials
'60 Minutes' Exposé About Allegiant Stirs Up Agents and Industry Officials

Both the airline and the FAA are under scrutiny regarding questions raised of airline safety compliance and enforcement.

What Is the Duty of Travel Agents Regarding Airline Safety Issues?
What Is the Duty of Travel Agents Regarding Airline Safety Issues?

Travel professionals must increasingly take precautions to disclose critical information about air travel to consumers, and then let them make their own decisions.

New Airlines Set to Shake Up International Travel
New Airlines Set to Shake Up International Travel

A new crop of startup carriers is seeking to challenge the status quo in the airline industry, both in the U.S. and abroad.

Agents React to Air Canada’s New Fare Structure
Agents React to Air Canada’s New Fare Structure

With the introduction of five economy fares, the carrier has added to the growing challenge for Canadian agents, that of explaining multiple fare options to consumers.

News Briefs
TMR Report Cards
Advertiser's Voice
Advertiser's Voice: Luxury Retreats