Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) will be using facial recognition to enable a contactless passenger journey at Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA). The technology will be deployed in the first half of 2021, with an initial rollout that includes 50 check-in kiosks and 20 check-in counters, as well as 56 total e-Gates at security and boarding checkpoints in Terminals 1 and 2.
The solution is intended to fulfill MAHB’s Single Token Journey initiative, which seeks to provide passengers with a secure token that will allow them to pass through checkpoints without showing a boarding pass. The platform will use facial recognition to generate that token, using biometrics to link the individual to their travel documents.
The Single Token Journey will be compatible with the MYairports app, allowing users to register their faces before arriving at the airport. Once registration is complete, passengers will be able to pass through checkpoints with only a facial recognition scan. The authentication process itself will take as little as five seconds per passenger.
In addition to providing a more seamless passenger experience, the contactless Single Token system will also eliminate shared touchpoints and improve public health outcomes during the COVID-19 pandemic. Foreign travelers will be able to take advantage of Immigration Autogates, and the system could eventually expand to enable contactless purchases at terminal retail outlets and airport lounges.
“Our aim is to make the airport future-ready when travel picks up again,” said MAHB CEO Datuk Mohd Shukrie Mohd. “We are making this technology available at the airport because we need to restore confidence among air travel passengers, and we hope to gain the cooperation of our airline partners to integrate their processes to adapt to this technology.”
Malaysia Airports signed an initial Memorandum of Understanding with SITA in 2019 to bring facial recognition to KLIA. SITA has emphasized the need for contactless screening technology in response to COVID-19, and recently received a Frost & Sullivan Excellence Award for its airport accomplishments in the APAC region.
January 18, 2021 – by Eric Weiss