The US Customs and Border Protection agency is using a recent bust to highlight the advantages of its escalating use of facial recognition technology at US airports.
As the CBP tells it, only a couple of days after this technology was implemented at the Washington Dulles International Airport, it found that a 26-year-old traveler coming from Sao Paulo, Brazil, didn’t match the face presented on his French passport. He was referred to further scrutiny, and ultimately it was discovered that the passport didn’t belong to him at all; he had a Republic of Congo ID card hidden in one of his shoes.
With an investigation ongoing, the CBP isn’t revealing more information about the man or his motives. In any case, his fraudulent presentation of ID is a serious crime, and it might not have been caught without the help of the CBP’s facial recognition technology.
While the Dulles International Airport (IAD) was one of the first in the country to facilitate the significant expansion of the CBP’s face scanning program last year, in announcing this latest bust of an impostor, the CBP indicated that IAD only initiated enhanced entry screening for international passengers on August 20th. And while privacy and civil rights advocates like the ACLU continue to have serious concerns about the use of this technology, especially on American citizens, the CBP’s promotion of successful outcomes like this one points to its intense interest in biometric security screening, and its very likely escalation going forward.
August 24, 2018 – by Alex Perala