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Major airport biometrics and government digital identity projects advance

Major airport biometrics and government digital identity projects advance
 

Airport biometrics and digital travel credentials made headlines on two of the most-read articles on Biometric Update this week. Digi Yatra was launched for domestic Indian flights and an explanation of recent advances in the U.S. is provided by Thales. Government action on digital identity apps was also a major theme for the week, with Australia finally realizing a long-time digital government goal with the launch of the myGov app, and Scytáles winning an EU Digital Identity Wallet contract.

Top biometrics news of the week

Australia’s myGov mobile app has launched to give residents control over their digital identity and access to both public and private-sector services. The app provides log-in with face biometrics, includes a digital wallet, and gives users access to 15 government services to start, with more coming soon.

The EU Council has agreed on a draft version of the AI Act, with a ban on social scoring, fundamental rights considerations for classifying applications as high-risk, and more detailed definitions of “public spaces” and “remote biometric identification systems.” Several civil society groups and some EU legislators immediately weighed in with criticisms.

The Council has also reached a common position on the legal framework for a continental digital ID. Proposed amendments to eIDAS would set technical standards for EU ID digital wallets, address attribute attestation, define its relations with other laws, and could give countries until 2025 or later to have the whole system up and running.

At almost the exact same time it was announced a contract to build the European Digital Identity Wallet that will deliver that ID has been awarded to Scytáles, along with partner Netcompany-Intrasoft.

An agreement between the UK and Ukraine will see the countries collaborate on digital identity, emerging technologies and cybersecurity. Ukraine gets financial services access, and a path to global portability of digital identity through mutual recognition agreements becomes a little clearer.

U.S. CBP has introduced biometric traveler verification for people debarking on cruise ships from San Diego, as border biometrics checks continue to expand. Already, 240 million people have used CBP biometrics at sea, land and air borders, and another 16 airports in the country are expected to test biometric systems next year.  Meanwhile India’s Digi Yatra system has expanded to biometric checks for domestic flights.

Thales Head of Business Development and Strategic Marketing Neville Pattinson explains in a sponsored post how digital travel credentials held on mobile phones are now combining with face biometrics to deliver the long-promised ‘paperless’ airport journey. A single app serves multiple airport processes for major time savings, and will be further extended going forward.

Samsung is excited about the security possibilities of using two or even three fingerprints for user authentication anywhere on the screen of a mobile device. The capability could be ready within two or three years, the company suggests, opening up a potential $2.5 billion market.

Ghana brought its biometric SIM card registration to a head with the passage of November 30 deadline, but did not immediately deactivate those that not completed the process. Over 21 million SIMs were registered a month ago, and it is unclear how many more were added in the following three weeks. The latest update is that Ghana has cut off 8 million mobile accounts, the BBC reports via The Star.

The Foundation for Defense of Democracies argues that Tiandy Technologies, a supplier of security camera systems and facial recognition, should be sanctioned or added to the U.S. Entity List. The company is tied to China’s government, sells to Iran and is involved in human rights abuses, it says.

Traditional MFA is far from a magic bullet against attacks, and cybercriminals have several feasible found ways around it, Innovatrics Founder and CEO Ján Lunter explains in a Biometric Update guest post. Using biometrics as an additional authentication factor can prevent them, and present a good trade-off.

Callsign General Manager for Asia Pacific Namrata Jolly explores the rapidly growing threat of authorized fraud in another guest post. The volume of authorized fraud attacks has grown to a major problem for two-thirds of APAC financial services companies and caught the attention of regulators.

Please let us know of any videos, editorials or other content we should share with the biometrics and digital identity communities in the comments below or through social media.

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