Incheon Airport to pilot non-contact fingerprint recognition system for airport staff security

The new system accurately captures biometric information from a person’s fingers by means of a 3D image via motion detection.

As part of ongoing efforts to improve airport security hardware,  Incheon International Airport Corporation (IIAC) has announced, in a press release dated last month, upgrades to the existing biometric security systems for employees. The recent upgrade features a “non-contact fingerprint recognition” system, and is intended to enhance airport security and efficiency.

The new system employs a technique known as “non-contact fingerprint recognition”; excluding the thumb, this system accurately captures biometric information from a person’s fingers by means of a “3D image (generated) via motion detection”, according to the press release. Compared to existing biometric security systems which require physical contact, the new “non-contact fingerprint recognition” systems record a higher recognition rate. The lack of physical contact also makes the new systems more hygienic.

Additionally, unlike existing biometric security systems, the new “non-contact fingerprint recognition” system is able to collect biometric data without having the person “remain stationary”, and “fingerprint recognition is automatically performed just once”.

The deployment of the new system is not intended to replace existing biometric security systems, but complement them. By using both systems simultaneously, IIAC hopes to boost employee gate security via a two-step authentication process — once via the new non-contact recognition, and a second time via physical scans by current biometric security systems.

A trial run of the new system is currently underway at the east staff exit of Incheon Airport’s Terminal 1. The scale of future deployment of the new system will be determined by the pilot test results.

“I will review the pilot operation results of the (new systems) and expand it to the entire (airport) by 2020,” said Chung Il-Young, president of IIAC. “We will also consider introducing it to passenger areas in future”. President Chung also pledged to make Incheon Airport “clean, convenient and safe with zero defects”.

 

The recent implementation of the new security systems is part of Incheon Airport’s modernisation program to maintain international competitiveness and upholds its image as a world-class airport. The IIAC has sought to achieve this via investments in enhancing and expanding airport infrastructure, participating in international research partnerships, as well as improving customer service and airport security by installing new hardware. Robots deployed by LG are currently being used at Incheon Airport to guide travellers as well as maintain airport cleanliness;  last month, “Drop&Fly” self-service bag drop units were also deployed at Incheon Airport’s Terminal 2, making baggage drop-off more convenient for travellers and baggage handling more accurate and secure.

Incheon International Airport has ranked consistently within the top 10 airports the world, according to Skytrax. The airport’s range of amenities such as a golf course, spa, and private lounges and excellence in customer service has received much international praise, and the IIAC emphasises on improving the customer experience as part of its ongoing airport modernisation initiatives.

Still, the IIAC’s emphasis on improving hardware and infrastructure does not address other pressing issues. In 2016, a Chinese couple and 25-year old Vietnamese man evaded Korean immigration and entered the country illegally; similarly in April this year, a sex offender identified as Shin managed to slip past airport security and was only by Vietnamese law enforcement personnel after his plane landed in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. In the dual incidents of 2016, the Chinese couple allegedly got past multiple security gates in a mere 14 minutes; an alarm had gone off when the Vietnamese man forced his way through an automated gate during peak morning hours, but it had gone unnoticed by duty personnel at the time. Experts have highlighted the lack of strong inter-agency coordination, and chronic understaffing of security personnel resulting in undermanned security systems.

source : opengovasia

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Florida airport to begin scanning faces of international passengers

Orlando International Airport will employ face scanners for passengers

on arriving and departing international flights, a move that airport authorities claim will speed up customs, while privacy advocates worry about the lack of formal rules in place for the data from the scans.

                                                                                      David J.Phillip/ ap

Florida’s busiest airport will be the first in the nation to require a face scan of passengers on all arriving and departing international flights, officials said Thursday, a move that pleases airport executives but worries privacy advocates.

Officials at Orlando International Airport said the expansion of face scans would speed up the time it takes for passengers to go through customs.

“It’s almost like Christmas in June for me,” said Phil Brown, chief executive of the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority. “The process of going into and out of Orlando is going to be greatly enhanced.”

But some privacy advocates say there are no formal rules in place for handling data gleaned from the scans, nor formal guidelines on what should happen if a passenger is wrongly prevented from boarding.

Airports in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Las Vegas, Miami, New York, and Washington already use face scans for some departing international flights, but they don’t involve all international flights at the airports as the program’s expansion in Orlando would.

The image from the face scan is compared to a Department of Homeland Security biometric database that has passport images of people who should be on the flight in order to verify the traveler’s identity. The images are held in the database for 14 days before being deleted, said John Wagner, an official with US Customs and Border Protection.

The face scan expansion is costing the Orlando airport authority $4 million. The program should be rolled out at other airports in other US cities in the next year, Mr. Wagner said.

“We’re comparing you against a photograph you’ve given the US government for the purposes of travel,” Wagner said. “You know your picture is being taken. You’re standing in front of a camera. There’s nothing subversive about this, and we’re only comparing you against your passport photo.”

US citizens at these airports can opt out, but the agency “doesn’t seem to be doing an adequate job letting Americans know they can opt out,” said Harrison Rudolph, an associate at the Center on Privacy & Technology at the Georgetown University Law Center.

The Orlando announcement marks a step up in the scope of the face scan program, Mr. Rudolph said.

“We’re not talking about one gate,” he said. “We’re talking about every international departure gate, which is a huge expansion of the number of people who will be scanned. Errors tend to go up as uses go up.”

Orlando International Airport had about 6 million international passengers in the past year. Face scans for arrivals and departures should be fully in place by the end of the year, although passengers landing at Orlando International Airport currently undergo them upon arriving. Passengers who had their photos taken Thursday at the Orlando airport took it in stride.

“It was fine, efficient, very fast,” said Katrina Poulsen, a Denmark resident who arrived in Orlando on a flight from London.

Andrea Nabarria, who arrived on the same flight, said he understands the concerns about privacy but that passengers may have to give up something in exchange for beefed up security.

“At least that’s what we’re told,” said Mr. Nabarria, an Italian who is a resident of Denmark.

Rudolph said he has concerns about the face scans’ accuracy since some research shows they are less accurate with racial minorities, women, and children. Researchers say this is because photos used to train the face-scanning software underrepresent minorities, women, and young people.

Wagner said the agency hasn’t seen discrepancies based on race or gender using face scans at the other airports.

Two US senators last month sent a letter to the Department of Homeland Security, which is home to the border protection agency, urging that formal rules be implemented before the program is expanded.

“It will also ensure a full vetting of this potentially sweeping program that could impact every American leaving the country by the airport,” said the letter from US Sens. Ed Markey (D) of Mass. and Mike Lee (R) of Utah.

This story was reported by The Associated Press. 

source : cs.monitor

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Vistara’s ‘RADA’ robot to assist and address customers at airports

Vistara has launched a new AI-based robot that is aimed at assisting customers at airports,

along with addressing their queries. The ‘RADA’ robot will initially be placed at the company’s Signature Lounge at Delhi Airport’s Terminal 3 from July 5, 2018, for helping customers in the lounge. The robot’s functionality is touted to be improved over time with new features, after taking user feedback.

According to the company, the robot uses Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology and can assist customers, address their queries and even entertain them.

“During its initial stage, RADA will be placed at Vistara’s Signature Lounge at Delhi Airport’s Terminal 3 from July 5 to assist customers using the lounge before they board their flights,” the airline said in a statement.

“‘RADA’ will be further developed over a period of time in terms of functionality and features for future use cases, after gauging customer feedback.”

At present, the robot can scan boarding passes and further provide information on the terminal, departure gates, weather conditions of destination city, real time flight status as well as information about Vistara’s products and services.

“It greets customers and interacts with them using basic hand movements, and is capable of moving around in the lounge on predefined pathways,” the statement said.

“Additionally, it can engage with kids and adults alike by playing games and other multimedia content such as songs and videos.”

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Face scans to be required for international travelers at Orlando airport

ORLANDO, Fla. — Florida’s busiest airport

is becoming the first in the nation to require a face scan of passengers on all arriving and departing international flights, including U.S. citizens, according to officials there.
The expected announcement Thursday at Orlando International Airport alarms some privacy advocates who say there are no formal rules in place for handling data gleaned from the scans, nor formal guidelines on what should happen if a passenger is wrongly prevented from boarding.
Airports in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Las Vegas, Miami, New York and Washington already use face scans for some departing international flights, but they don’t involve all international travelers at the airports like the program’s expansion in Orlando would. The image from the face scan is compared to a Department of Homeland Security biometric database that has images of people who should be on the flight, in order to verify the traveler’s identity.
U.S. citizens at these airports can opt out, but the agency “doesn’t seem to be doing an adequate job letting Americans know they can opt out,” said Harrison Rudolph, an associate at the Center on Privacy & Technology at the Georgetown University Law Center.
U.S. citizens at the Orlando airport will be able to opt out just like at the other airports if they don’t want to provide their photograph, Jennifer Gabris, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Customs and Border Protection said in an email. However, a notice about a possible rule change for the program states that “U.S. citizens may be required to provide photographs upon entering or departing the United States.”
The Orlando announcement marks a step up in the scope of the face scan program, Rudolph said.
“We’re not talking about one gate,” he said. “We’re talking about every international departure gate, which is a huge expansion of the number of people who will be scanned. Errors tend to go up as uses go up.”

Orlando International Airport had about 6 million international passengers in the past year.

Rudolph said he has concerns about the face scans’ accuracy, since some research shows they are less accurate with racial minorities, women and children. Researchers say this is because photos used to train the face-scanning software underrepresent minorities, women and young people.

Two U.S. senators last month sent a letter to the Department of Homeland Security, which is home to the border protection agency, urging that formal rules be implemented before the program is expanded.

“It will also ensure a full vetting of this potentially sweeping program that could impact every American leaving the country by airport,” said the letter from U.S. Sen. Ed Markey, D-Mass. and U.S. Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah.

source : nypost

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wheelAIR trial at Edinburgh Airport to improve users’ airport experiences

wheelAIR Edinburgh Airport trial image

OmniServ, an airline and airport assistance services provider, is trialling the innovative wheelAIR cooling backrest cushion at Edinburgh Airport as part of its continued efforts to improve the experience for passengers requiring special assistance at UK airports.

For the trial, which launched on 5th June, wheelAIR teamed up with mobility retailer FastAid Products – part of the John Preston Group – who provided an active lightweight wheelchair to enable customers to try the wheelAIR cushions, giving OmniServ the opportunity to gain feedback from passengers.

Designed in 2015 by Corien Staels, wheelAIR was designed with the input of Paralympic athletes and wheelchair manufacturers. It uses inbuilt fan technology to cool the back and reduce the user’s core temperature by taking away excess heat and moisture, allowing for better temperature control.

The cushion also offers extra support through a blend of carefully selected foams, says the company.

Samantha Berry, Head of Innovation and Regulatory Compliance at OmniServ, said: “We are constantly looking at new innovations and technologies that enhance the end-to-end passenger experience.

“We are delighted to partner with wheelAIR to trial this solution to help passengers in wheelchairs travel much more comfortably, particularly as we enter the hottest summer months.”

wheelAIR Edinburgh Airport trial image

The news follows a move earlier this year by OmniServ, which saw the introduction of another British invention, the ProMove Sling – an easily transportable, lightweight option for lifting and transferring passengers with reduced mobility when it is not possible to deploy a powered hoist.

Ross Gilpin, Accessibility & PRM Contracts Manager at Edinburgh Airport, commented: “The passenger experience is a crucial element of our business and we have invested and focused on our special assistance service provision over the last few years so we provide that positive experience for those passengers who require extra attention and care.

“The trial of wheelAIR is another example of the innovative approach we take as we seek to improve on what the Civil Aviation Authority already regard as a good standard of service.

“We want to improve further and will look at the feedback we receive from our passengers as it is important that they help to shape our service.”

The wheelAIR is the first product of the Scottish company, Staels Design, and was developed to solve the problem of overheating in a manual wheelchair. The company’s mission is to help improve wheelchair users’ lives by designing high-quality, stylish products.

Speaking on the launch of the trial at Edinburgh Airport, Corien Staels said: “Our mission is to help improve wheelchair users’ lives by designing stylish products of the highest quality.

“We are delighted to be working with OmniServ in helping people stay comfortable whilst at the airport. Like OmniServ, we are committed to providing a high-quality experience for our customers.”

OmniServ is the International Division of ABM Aviation, a company which provides a comprehensive range of dependable solutions to more than 100 airports globally.

In 2011, John Preston joined with Fast Aid Medical & Mobility to form a healthcare group. Fast Aid, formerly known as Anderson Medical, has been trading in Scotland for over 35 years and has a showroom in Edinburgh.

source : thiis is.co.uk

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Smart Technology Will Make Incheon Int’l Airport Even Smarter

Passengers can depart from the Incheon International Airport simply through facial recognition even without a passport and a boarding pass from next year.
Passengers will be able to depart from Incheon International Airport without a passport and a boarding pass from next year at the earliest.

From next year at the earliest, passengers using Incheon International Airport

will be able to depart without their passport and boarding pass with them as the airport devices can recognize their faces when they go through the departure procedure.

In addition, they will be able to use a delivery service to have their luggage sent to and from the airport. AI chatbots will provide around-the-clock airport guide services via  Kakao Talk. From 2023, robots will provide valet parking services.

These are some of the smart services that Incheon International Airport Corporation will provide in the near future based on Industry 4.0 technology. The corporation has disclosed 100 tasks it would undertake in the next five years to introduce innovative airport services, including home check-in, biometric recognition-based immigration clearance and self-service duty-free shops.

The corporation is planning to launch the Smart Pass service early next year so that pre-registered facial recognition data can take the place of boarding passes and passports. In 2020, the pre-registration of faces will become unnecessary as the South Korean government’s biometric information service will be available.

In 2023, tunnel-type security screening will be introduced so that security screening can be completed simply by passage through a tunnel. Passengers will not have to be scanned separately from their belongings.

The home check-in service is planned to be tested from the second half of this year, when 14 AI chatbots and intelligent CCTVs for immediate security threat response are put into operation at the airport.

Self-driving vehicles will make their debut in the passenger terminal area next year, and the parking robot-based valet parking and the IoT-based duty-free shops are available from 2023.

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Transport minister moots fine for airports that delay, lose passengers’ luggage

Loke said Mavcom will be tasked with ensuring airport operators are fined accordingly if they are caught slacking off. — Shutterstock.com pic

Loke said Mavcom will be tasked with ensuring airport operators are fined accordingly if they are caught slacking off. — Shutterstock.com pic

KUALA LUMPUR, June 17 —

Fines will be imposed on airports that fail to comply with some of the 21 Key Performances Indexes (KPI) and this includes the ability to handle passengers’ luggage effectively, Transport Minister Anthony Loke said.

He said the Malaysian Aviation Commission (Mavcom) will be tasked with enforcing this KPI to ensure airport operators are fined accordingly if they are caught slacking off.

“Certain fines will be imposed on airports or operators. We will push for that more strictly… lots of weaknesses and complaints in baggage system — we must look into the whole thing,” he was quoted as saying in The Star.

“Airports must be held responsible, they must be proactive in preempting problems and issues, not just the baggage system,” he added.

Another issue that commonly occurs at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport, Loke said, included the aerotrain service breaking down occasionally.

source : SG news

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IATA Adopts RFID Bag Tracking

An airport baggage carousel
(photo via anyaberkut/iStock/Getty Images Plus)
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