deja vu? – Airport tests passenger eye IDs, Heathrow Airport

Airport tests passenger eye IDs – Feb 8th 2002

Heathrow Airport is to test a new hi-tech identity system which examines a passenger’s eye, rather than their passport as they go through immigration control.
Heathrow is the first UK airport to carry out a large-scale trial of the iris recognition technology.

The aim is to speed up the movement of passengers through the terminal.

A total of 2,000 passengers who frequently fly from North America to Heathrow on Virgin and British Airways flights are taking part in the five-month trial.

Computer record

Each passenger will have an image of one of their eye’s iris stored on computer.

Instead of showing their passport on arrival they will go into a kiosk where in two minutes a camera will check that the pattern of their iris matches computer records.

If so a barrier will automatically open.

The trial will test the technology and gauge passenger reaction.

Passengers taking part are being asked to carry their passports during the trial period should immigration officials want to check their details.

Security at UK airports remains tight following 11 September.

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