By Karin Sveheim, Precise Biometrics and member of the Silicon Trust

What if you could glide right through check-in and security controls at the airport in a fast lane, using your mobile phone for identification – passing by queuing exhausted parents and business people returning from holidays and daylong meetings? Future Registered Traveler Programs, incorporating Match-on-SIM™ card with mobile phones and biometrics will allow this.

Over recent years, higher demands on security and tighter government regulations have made it difficult for airline companies and airports to uphold an efficient passenger flow. And since then, the aviation industry has been leaning towards the use of biometrics to help in this area.

By using biometrics to verify passengers through the travel process, the aviation industry has found ways of maintaining their efficient self-service systems. And by taking advantage of the fact that most travelers carry mobile phones, it looks like the aviation industry will take yet another step towards eliminating queues in the airport environment.

Fingerprint recognition and mobile phone SIM cards are key elements in the future of Registered Traveler Programs using Match-on-SIM biometric technology.

The rise of the mobile phone

Today one of the most popular approaches to combining biometrics with smart cards is using Match-on-Card™. This process involves both the matching and storing of fingerprints, which takes place on a smart card. It has the privacy advantage of storing the fingerprint template within the card, therefore making it unavailable to external applications and the outside world. And as SIM cards represent 80% of the entire smart card market, Match-on-Card is now also available on SIM cards – Match-on-SIM.

Millions of people already use their mobile phones to access their bank accounts, read their emails, talk to people using Instant Messenger (IM)® and download music and ring tones, all of which require an element of verification. However, as more and more functions and applications, such as Registered Traveler Programs, have the ability to be added to the mobile phone, the need for secure verification is increasing.

Biometrics in the aviation industry

At airports, where passenger safety and national security are paramount, this technology enables airlines and airports to offer travelers an extensive and secure service, based on biometric verification.

Match-on-SIM is a solution demonstrating that fingerprint recognition and mobile phones can be combined in an entire solution for airline travel. Biometrics can be used throughout the entire process of booking, check-in, boarding and other services related to travel where authentication is needed. The solution offers definable advantages and cost-efficiencies to airline companies through its automated travel processes and security upgrade.

The system provides many of the services that the self-service kiosks offer today, but without the maintenance overheads. And, as with all automated airport processes, it allows for faster passenger throughput as well as increased reliability and more accurate passenger identity verification.

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