Information Systems Integration – Messina

TSA to Start using Facial Recognition for Domestic Flights

facial recognition

TSA has recently announced its plans to start using facial recognition technology for domestic flights. Since 2015, Customs and Border Protection has been using facial recognition technology when non-US citizens enter the United States through international flights. This program was then expanded to US citizens that take international flights out of the US. TSA has decided to adopt this technology, which it claims will help various travel problems, to all domestic flights in the US.

The TSA will utilize a system called Biometric Pathway to have travelers face scanned. In order to better implement the new system, the TSA has agreed to partner with the Customs and Border Protection, as they have more experience with adopting the new technology.

The technology will make its debut later this month, when Delta Air Lines will create the first biometric terminal at the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. The TSA believes that this will solve problems by speeding up automatic flight check-in, bag drop, ID verification and boarding flights. In recent years, the number of travelers using airplanes has increased, and this technology will let travelers rely less on physical documents such as passports. However, critics have claimed that this technology may cause privacy concerns and racial bias. Do you think this technology is smart to include in airports or that the negatives outweigh the potential positives? Are there any other issues that may occur from including this technology in airports?


6 Responses to TSA to Start using Facial Recognition for Domestic Flights

  • Interesting read, Lauren. I think this is a wonderful idea to expedite the arduous and stringent TSA processing lines. In addition to processing travelers at a more efficient rate, I believe that this technology would also provide increased security on domestic flights by easily identifying criminals that might be “on the run”. I believe that TSA officers are more likely to racially profile travelers than an AI facial recognition technology. However, when dealing with mass data, privacy is always a concern. Data security should be the paramount consideration when implementing this technology.

  • Unfortunately I am not a supporter of this technology especially as a supplement to domestic flights I think that it will make flights take longer not shorter, having physical documents is not an issue anymore with tickets on phones and it takes all but 30 seconds of the airport worker to look at my ticket and my ID.

  • I can see how this kind of technology will support the airlines in producing faster check-in and ID verification. I do think this might be a little to much on the privacy end because then these companies will have information about how you look. I’m ok with companies having my name and other information but having my face on record kind of makes me feel uncomfortable. One thing airports might deal with is people who look similar. Who’s to say that this kind of technology is accurate enough to tell maybe twins apart?

  • This would be a really cool implementation of this technology. For the privacy issues, I see this option as an opt-in or opt-out type of deal. It would expedite terminal traffic at the airport but it should be up to travelers if they want to participate. In regards to racial bias, there definitely is potential for this to be an issue. Artificial Intelligence is programmed to learn from the environment and there is racial bias prevalent in many places – whether it be from the person developing the initial programming or just the environment the AI learns from. Monitoring both the racial bias and privacy issues would be paramount, but this use of technology could be really useful and efficient in airports.

  • This is an interesting read and I can relate with this as an international student that has been through the US Customs and Border Protection bio metrics. I believe official documents are much more reliable than current facial recognition technology. I have had to give my fingerprints and pictures taken for facial recognition. I didn’t find how that was more efficient or how it speed up the process of checkin or immigration or boarding. I understand that documents can be faked but i also believe that facial recognition is not developed enough to gain value. I believe that something so serious like immigration, boarding flights, checkin process needs a better technology to authenticate the traveler than facial recognition. Maybe implement blockchain technology? each passport number can be added to the block chain and each arrival departure or checkin can add on to that chain. this will be more reliable since no fake passports or documents can register themselves and can provide clear identification.

  • This is definitely an interesting article. If this technology implemented it could for sure cut down the time it takes people to get through the airport. I’m not too sure how reliable this technology is. What if someone had a twin? Would the technology be able to pick up on that? As Zoey mentioned I do think people should be able to opt in and out of this at their will for privacy reasons.

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