Partnerships for Pangiam, SITA and Embross to ease travel processes
Several technology companies across North America, Europe and Asia have released new biometric software or hardware tools or entered partnerships to develop them.
First up is Virginia-headquartered firm Pangiam, which joined forces with Amsterdam Airport Schiphol to develop artificial intelligence (AI)-based technologies to screen hand baggage.
Pangiam’s technology will analyze images of hand baggage and identify prohibited items alongside other security risks. The collaboration with Schiphol represents the first major European airport to support Project Dartmouth, a joint project between Pangiam and Google Cloud.
SITA issues digital ID credentials for travel to Aruba
SITA, Indicio and the Aruba Tourism Authority are launching a pilot of digital travel credentials.
Following the start of the new collaboration (the entities joined forces before), the entities will work towards enabling seamless travel to Aruba via verifiable Digital Travel Credentials (DTCs).
Travelers interested in taking advantage of this technology can share individual data points from their digital wallet on their mobile device at several touch points of the journey, including hotels or car rentals.
The DTC follows the International Civil Aviation Organization’s (ICAO) standards and is designed to facilitate a trusted relationship between passengers and the governments of the country they plan to visit.
“A government-issued passport represents the highest form of identity assurance,” comments Indicio CEO Heather Dahl.
“What we’ve done is built a way to translate the trustworthiness of a passport into an equally trustworthy ICAO DTC type 1 digital credential – all without needing to store any personal data about the passenger outside the credential.”
Embross self-service platform deployments expand
The Ontario-based company says the deployments were completed at three major airports. One of them, Jackson Hole in Wyoming, is the first in North America to deploy a platform certified to IATA’s V1.04 standard, according to the announcement, as well as the first to adopt American and Delta Airlines’ CUPPS (Common Use Passenger Processing Systems) application.
Embross also confirms Appleton International Airport in Wisconsin will soon provide the company’s CUPPS platform for mobile agent positioning. Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport will deploy both its CUPPS and CUSS (Common Use Self-Service) platforms.
Vietnam to speed up biometric adoption at local airports
Vietnamese authorities are increasingly testing biometric technologies, including fingerprint, face and iris recognition for domestic flights, according to Tuoi Tre News.
Huynh Bao Quoc, head of information technology at the Airports Corporation of Vietnam (ACV), reportedly confirmed the claims, adding the Corporation is currently testing such a system at Cat Bi International Airport in northern Hai Phong City.
“This is to reduce flight check-in time, increase accuracy, detect passengers using fake documents, and identify people who are wanted or banned from flying,” Quoc is quoted as saying.
The executive adds that while the deployment of biometric technologies in smaller airports is proceeding apace, it may take substantially longer for larger airports, particularly those with frequent international flights.
TSA executive highlights benefits of biometric-powered automation
Talking at a Tuesday’s panel at South by Southwest, Transportation Security Administration (TSA) chief David Pekoske said the company overcame last year’s staffing struggles and is now screening almost 2.4 million people daily.
“With the technology we’ve already deployed, we know we don’t have to increase the size of our workforce,” Pekoske said, according to Government Technology.
The executive also confirmed TSA is working on upgrading both its camera and lighting systems, as well as its algorithms.
“It’s critically important that this system has as little friction as it possibly can while we provide for safety and security.”
Pekoske added that while using TSA biometrics is currently optional, that will not necessarily be the case in the future.
CBP and Carnival Cruise Line bring biometrics to Port of Jacksonville
U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) confirmed launching face biometric comparison technology for closed-loop cruises at the port.
“CBP and Carnival are innovating the cruise debarkation process through the use of facial biometrics to provide travelers a secure, touchless process to verify identity while enhancing the customer experience,” comments Vernon Foret, CBP’s director of field operations for the Miami and Tampa Field Office.
“In addition, CBP and our cruise partners are expanding data sharing agreements to further strengthen the maritime environment.”
At the time of writing, face biometrics is available at 17 seaports across the United States. The new partnership with CBP comes almost a year after Carnival Cruise announced that over a million of its guests boarded its ships after verifying their vaccination status using VeriFLY health passes by Daon.