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Idemia’s automated biometric lanes to open to all foreigners entering Singapore

Idemia’s automated biometric lanes to open to all foreigners entering Singapore

All foreigner visitors to Singapore will soon be able to enter the country using automated biometric lanes at land, sea and air checkpoints, with technology provided by Idemia.

The Straits Times reports that the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA)’s new clearance concept (NCC) will not require pre-registration, and that travelers leaving Singapore will not need to show their passports on exiting. The transition will happen progressively, as hundreds of additional automated lanes are added to the 160 installed during 2023.

Idemia is supplying its Augmented Borders Suite of ID-Look devices and back-end systems, for a contactless Automated Border Control System (ABCS) that will enable travelers to clear immigration using QR codes or multimodal biometrics including iris, face and fingerprint details. The firm has had a presence in Singapore airports since 2017, when it began providing biometrics for border checks at Changi Airport.

Idemia, which also supplies the U.S. Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) credential authentication technology (CAT2) terminals, recently announced its division into three separate business streams – one each for biometrics, digital id, and payments.

The ICA’s new clearance concept (NCC) was first trialed in 2019. After a downturn related to Covid-19 travel restrictions, Singapore saw its visitor numbers rise in 2023. Although the 193 million clearances across all checkpoints is still not back to pre-pandemic levels, the surge in travel has also seen a spike in immigration-related offenses, many of which were identified using biometric databases.

Biometrics are increasingly prominent at airports and border crossings as a way to manage immigration access and decrease friction.

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