Australian Airports Choosing Biometric eGates, Citizens In Support

Earlier this year, the disappearance of Malaysian Airlines flight 370 had the world questioning the integrity of passport based border control after it was revealed that two of the passengers aboard the Boeing 777 were in possession of forged travel documents. World wide, the new solution being arrived at by airline security officials is biometric eGates, with the market set to grow dramatically over the next five years, particularly in Europe.

This also seems to be the case where the Malaysia Airlines tragedy hit close to home. Australian Customs is going down the path of least resistance and highest security in its pursuit of a viable eGate border control solution, having narrowed its choices down to two companies: Morpho and Vision-Box.

Both of these European headquartered companies have passed into an $8.4 million two-year trial period of their technology. In the end Australian Customs would like to have the vast majority of travelers using the biometric processing in order to cope with increasing passenger volume.

With a biometric solution in place, preauthorized screening procedures can be observed, allowing passengers already cleared for travel to pass through security without interacting with a customs official. Instead, passengers simply interface with quick and easy biometric security eGates that confirm their identity at each security checkpoint.

Where recently in other parts of the world, the convenient and secure promise of biometrics has sparked technophobia and in one rare case anti-biometric legislation, Australia seems to be much more open to this idea. A recent report from research firm Unisys shows that three quarters of Australian citizens surveyed would be willing to provide biometric data to ensure the identity of a passport holder prior to takeoff.

The automated border control (ABC) eGates and kiosks market is rapidly on the rise. findBIOMETRICS explored this in a recent webinar, presented in concert with Acuity Market Intelligence. Tomorrow we will be presenting the second part in this webinar series focusing specifically on the airport aspect of the market. Registration is still open.

May 27, 2014 – by Peter B. Counter