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Biometrics

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CBP: Changing the Face of Travel

Biometrics: Creating a More Seamless Travel Experience

Biometrics: Creating a More Seamless Travel Experience

Many have asked how CBP landed on facial biometrics as the ideal technology path to a more seamless travel experience. It wasn’t an overnight decision.

We found collecting facial images is easy for both travelers and CBP Officers. The technology is intuitive and hassle-free, with traveler identity matches made quickly. The fact that mobile device users now have the option to use biometrics to unlock their phones also helped shape our decision.

How it Works

During the boarding process, you simply stand in front of the camera to have your photo taken. The picture taken is then matched against the photo you had provided with your passport application.

Once your photo has been verified, you can immediately board your flight. It is that easy!

Experience it Here

CBP is leading the transformation of the travel experience, but we could never do this alone. Our airline industry and technology partners are playing a critical role. To date, CBP has demonstrated the facial matching service at ports from Virginia to Vegas to Miami. Our pilot programs with Delta, Jet Blue, British Airways, and partnerships with Royal Caribbean and others have opened doors and eyes to a range of possibilities. Collectively, CBP and our partners are making history and delivering clear and undeniable benefits to travelers.

Air Exit:

  • Atlanta (ATL)
  • Boston (BOS)
  • Dallas (DFW)
  • Detroit (DTW)
  • Fort Lauderdale (FLL)
  • Houston Hobby (HOU)
  • Los Angeles (LAX)
  • Miami (MIA)
  • New York (JFK)
  • Orlando (MCO)
  • San Francisco (SFO)
  • San Jose (SJC)
  • Washington Dulles (IAD)
  • Washington Reagan (DCA)

Air Entry:

  • Abu Dhabi Preclearance (AUH)
  • Aruba Preclearance (AUA)
  • Atlanta (ATL)
  • Dublin Preclearance (DUB)
  • Dulles (IAD)
  • Ft. Lauderdale (FLL)
  • Houston (IAH)
  • John F Kennedy (JFK)
  • Las Vegas (LAS)
  • Los Angeles/Tom Bradley (TBIT)
  • Miami (MIA)
  • Orlando (MCO)
  • San Diego (SAN)
  • San Jose (SJC)
  • Shannon Preclearance (SNN)

Sea Entry:

  • Cape Liberty Cruise Terminal, Bayonne, NJ/ Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines
  • Port Everglades, Fort Lauderdale, FL/Celebrity Cruise Lines
  • Port Miami, Miami/Norwegian Cruise Lines and Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines
  • Port Canaveral, FL/Norwegian Cruise Lines and Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines

Privacy

CBP is fully committed to compliance with privacy laws and regulations, and to protecting travelers’ information and privacy. CBP’s biometric matching service is hosted in a secure cloud-based environment and stores only the traveler’s photo, and does not store the biographic data for any travelers. Pictures of U.S. Citizens and biometrically-exempt aliens[1] are taken and transmitted to CBP solely for the purpose of validating the identity of the traveler and ensuring that the passport being presented belongs to the individual presenting the document. Only CBP has access to this biometric data. No personally identifiable information associated with biometrics is ever shared with our industry partners during or after the “match/no match” determination. However, for in-scope non-U.S. Citizens, photos may be transmitted to the DHS Automated Biometric Identification System (IDENT) and stored as the traveler’s biometric encounter with CBP, consistent with existing laws and processes.

CBP does not require U.S. Citizens or biometrically-exempt aliens to have their pictures taken when entering or exiting the country. In addition, CBP does not require in-scope travelers[2] to have their pictures taken at Exit. These travelers who request not to participate in this facial comparison process may notify a CBP Officer or an airline or airport representative in order to seek an alternative means of verifying their identities and documents.

 

[1] By law, CBP is required to biometrically confirm the departure of “in-scope” travelers. An “in-scope” traveler is any alien who is required by law to provide biometrics upon entry or exit from the United States pursuant to 8 CFR 235.1(f)(ii). Some aliens are exempt from biometrics, including: Canadian citizens under section 101(a)(15)(B) of the Act who are not otherwise required to present a visa or be issued a form I-94 or Form I-95; aliens younger than 14 or older than 79 on the data of admission; aliens admitted A-1, A-2, C-3 (except for attendants, servants, or personal employees of accredited officials), G-1, G-2, G-3, G-4, NATO-1, NATO-2, NATO-3, NATO-4, NATO-5, or NATO-6 visas, and certain Taiwan officials who hold E-1 visas and members of their immediate families who hold E-1 visas unless the Secretary of State and the Secretary of Homeland Security jointly determine that a class of such aliens should be subject to the requirements of paragraph (d)(1)(ii); classes of aliens to whom the Secretary of Homeland Security and the Secretary of State jointly determine it shall not apply; or an individual alien to whom the Secretary of Homeland Security, the Secretary of State, or the Director of Central Intelligence determines it shall not apply.
[2] An “in-scope” traveler is any alien who is required by law to provide biometrics upon entry or exit from the United States pursuant to 8 CFR 235.1(f)(ii).

For specific information on the facial recognition process, security and privacy concerns please visit the Biometric Frequently Asked Questions webpage.

 

 

FAQs

For specific information on the facial recognition process, security and privacy concerns please visit the Biometric Frequently Asked Questions webpage.

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