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Clear, Alaska Airlines, TSA deploy biometrics to ease US airport experience

Zamna partners with Volaris, Digi Yatra fails to gain traction
Clear, Alaska Airlines, TSA deploy biometrics to ease US airport experience

Biometrics vendors and their aviation sector customers have recently completed new or analyzed existing biometrics deployments to make traveler journeys easier at various airports worldwide. They have found varying degrees of success.

The first on the list is Clear, which launched its identity verification technology at Bradley International Airport (BDL) in Connecticut, U.S., for security checks.

Travelers with a Clear membership can verify their identity using biometrics (iris or fingerprint recognition) and skip the line at TSA (Transportation Security Administration) physical security. After verifying their identity, a Clear Ambassador will escort them through the dedicated lane and directly to the physical security checkpoint.

Thanks to the new deployment, Clear now provides services to 52 airports, including nine of BDL’s top ten domestic destinations.

Alaska Airlines to deploy face recognition tech

Another company working towards the deployment of biometrics for airport security checks is Alaska Airlines. The firm announced this week that it will invest $2.5 billion in improvements to enhance its airport experience within Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Anchorage hubs.

Among the technologies mentioned in the announcement are bag tagging checkpoints relying on iPad tablets, and automated bag drop-off procedures with face biometrics.

The innovations are planned for deployment to Alaska Airlines’ hub airports beginning in spring of 2024.

Zamna joins forces with Mexico’s largest airline

London-based startup Zamna has entered a partnership with Mexico’s largest airline Volaris, reports Business Mondays.

The data-sharing platform will provide Volaris with its digital intelligence technology with the goal of reducing queue time during airport check-ins for international flights at Mexico City International Airport.

The pilot will cover two city pairs: Mexico City and Los Angeles Airport (LAX) and Guadalajara and LAX.

Digi Yatra struggles to gain popularity

Only 3 percent of eligible passengers at the Kolkata airport are relying on biometric technologies provided by the Indian government as part of the Digi Yatra initiative, reports Telegraph India.

Airport officials have been reportedly blaming slow adoption on a lack of awareness, reportedly trying to push passengers to take advantage of the technology via message notifications.

Privacy and security concerns, as well as personal preferences, have also been mentioned as possible causes for the slow uptake of the biometric technology.

The new data comes weeks after the Indian government said the Digi Yatra biometric system was not covered under information law.

TSA deploys ID document verification tech in Maryland

The Administration installed two new technology units at the Hagerstown Regional Airport to enhance the screening capabilities of travelers’ ID documents and their belongings at the security checkpoint.

According to a release published by TSA on Wednesday, the first tool is the Credential Authentication Technology (CAT) unit, which checks the validity of a traveler’s identification and confirms their flight information in near real-time.

The administration claims the CAT unit can authenticate more than 2,500 different types of IDs, such as passports, driver’s licenses, military ID cards, and U.S. visas.

The second technology is an advanced-technology computed tomography (CT) scanner designed to provide 3-D imaging with critical explosives detection capabilities for screening carry-on items.

The deployments come days after TSA asked the Biden administration for $1.4 billion to fund pay increases for workers that began in fiscal 2023.

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