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Delta’s biometric digital ID program expands to 3 major US airports

Delta’s biometric digital ID program expands to 3 major US airports

Delta has announced that its digital ID program is now expanding to three major airports – Los Angeles (LAX), LaGuardia (LGA), and John F. Kennedy International (JFK), the latter of which launches on December 14th. The program uses biometric face matching to eliminate the need for manual ID checks at checkpoints like bag drop and security.

The program is eligible for customers who have a TSA PreCheck membership, have a free SkyMiles membership, and have the Fly Delta app. They must also have their passport information and a Known Traveler Number stored in their Delta profile.

Eligible customers get an automatic notification in the app when traveling from an airport with the digital ID program. Once they opt in, the Delta Digital ID becomes a part of their SkyMiles profile. Customers can opt out at any time and Delta does not store any biometric data, the announcement notes. The face biometrics capability at the original Delta Digital ID locations is provided by Pangiam.

Once their information is verified, customers can use Delta Digital ID to check bags and move through security without needing to show their physical ID. Individuals go to the line designated for digital IDs with the green “Delta Digital ID” icon and look into the camera at the checkpoint to use their digital IDs in place of physical IDs.

The amount of time saved at security lines varies depending on airport volume, but travelers with Delta Digital IDs enabled spend an average of 30 seconds at bag drop, compared to a standard bag drop time of two minutes.

In the event a customer can’t be identified using biometrics, an agent will examine the customer’s government-issued ID in its place.

Delta has seen a large majority of eligible customers opt in to the system upon implementation in Atlanta and Detroit airports. The Atlanta airport will expand the service to the international terminal as soon as January.

TSA partners are also in favor of the program’s effectiveness. Assistant Administrator of Requirements, Capabilities and Analysis for TSA Austin Gould says the service is “a simpler, more convenient experience – one that strictly adheres to passenger privacy and our security protocols, as well as our mission of protecting our nation’s transportation systems.”

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