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NEC to provide facial biometrics for customs at 6 more airports in Japan


NEC Corporation has received an order from Japan Customs for a facial recognition system to perform biometric customs checks at six airports across the country.

The system leverages NEC’s NeoFace AI engine, and the company notes its previous top rankings in NIST Face in Video Evaluation (FIVE) testing. In addition to biometric exit gates, the system includes customs declaration apps and an electronic declaration terminals.

New Chitose Airport, Narita International Airport, Haneda Airport, Chubu International Airport, Kansai International Airport, and Fukuoka Airport are all expected to launch the technology by March, 2020. This would bring the system to the entry points for roughly 90 percent of international flights into country each year, according to the announcement.

NEC’s facial recognition was also launched to operation at Narita International Airport on April 15, as part of that airport’s curb-to-gate strategy.

Biometric technologies from NEC, including facial recognition systems, have now been supplied to approximately 50 airports around the world. The company also recently showcased a multi-modal biometric gate at INTERPOL World 2019.

Airport biometrics deployments continue

Kuwait International Airport is also implementing facial recognition for a three-month trial at its new Terminal 4, Xinhua reports.

Kuwait Directorate General of Civil Aviation Yousef Al-Fouzan said biometric technology is part of the airport’s digital strategy, with facial recognition deployed throughout the terminal to provide passenger and flight information, and locate passengers anywhere to deliver better airport services.

Belgian police are deploying facial recognition cameras around Brussels Airport, along with cameras with automatic license plate reading capabilities, according to The Brussels Times.

Police Commissioner General Marc De Mesmaeker said in an interview this week that after a trip to Brazil and Columbia, he was convinced of the technology’s value, though he also noted that public facial recognition is a sensitive topic, and that privacy rights remain.

“The results are impressive! The system detects people who have a record. In that way, there is no need to have a hundred officers to extract people at random from the queues,” said De Mesmaeker. “We shall soon introduce that technology at Zaventem airport. We have an agreement with the operator and the unions.”

The Charlotte Observer reports that airports in Charlotte and Raleigh are planning to deploy facial recognition for international flight departures as part of U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Biometric Exit program.

CBP North Carolina Area Port Director Barry Chastain said that completing the Charlotte deployment ahead of the Republican National Convention in the city on August 24, 2020 is a realistic goal. He says federal officials will work primarily with airport officials, as well as with American Airlines and Lufthansa, which operate most of the international flights from Charlotte.

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