Risk
8/13/2009
02:33 PM
Connect Directly
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Homeland Security Expands Biometric Security Program

Global Entry program, which speeds international travelers through airport security checks, is expanding to more airports.

The Department of Homeland Security is expanding a pilot project that uses fingerprint scanners and kiosks to speed travelers headed overseas through airport security.

On August 24th, the Global Entry Trusted Traveler program will be available at 13 additional airports in the United States and Puerto Rico, bringing the total number of airports equipped with the technology to 20. The program is also available at airports in the Netherlands through a partnership.

Launched in June 2008, the system makes international travel smoother for people willing to share their biometric data with the government, while lowering costs for Homeland Security by taking focus off of lower-risk travelers. "Expanding this vital program allows us to improve customer service at airports and concentrate our resources on higher-risk travelers," Homeland Security secretary Janet Napolitano said in a statement.

Concerns have been raised about the use of biometric technology as a way of confirming identity, including the possibility of spoofing the system, but a recent Unisys survey of 1,000 Americans found that 70% were comfortable using biometrics.

It might take a while for substantial cost savings to be realized, as the program remains small. About 16,000 people have signed up for Global Entry, and the kiosks have been used 51,000 times.

The program, started by the Customs and Border Protection agency, reduces airport security line wait times by an average of 70%. To participate, U.S. citizens or lawful permanent U.S. residents must submit fingerprint data to the government, pay a $100 fee, undergo a background check, and be interviewed by Customs and Border Protection officers to make sure they aren't security risks. Personal information required to participate include proof of citizenship, place of residence, and travel and job history.

To use the system, travelers walk up to a Global Entry kiosk outside of airport security, slide their passports into a reader, look into a camera, press their fingers to a scanner, and answer customs declaration questions. Fingerprint readers installed this summer use four fingerprints from either hand to verify identity.

There's a zero-tolerance policy for Global Entry; anyone who violates customs laws and regulations during the membership period loses their right to participate.

Global Entry is one of a few biometrics programs underway to facilitate travel. The Transportation Security Agency may soon expand a system used to speed flight crew through airport security.


InformationWeek has published an in-depth report on leading-edge government IT -- and how the technology involved may end up inside your business. Download the report here (registration required).

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Cartoon
Current Issue
Dark Reading, September 16, 2014
Malicious software is morphing to be more targeted, stealthy, and destructive. Are you prepared to stop it?
Flash Poll
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2014-2942
Published: 2014-09-22
Cobham Aviator 700D and 700E satellite terminals use an improper algorithm for PIN codes, which makes it easier for attackers to obtain a privileged terminal session by calculating the superuser code, and then leveraging physical access or terminal access to enter this code.

CVE-2014-5522
Published: 2014-09-22
** REJECT ** DO NOT USE THIS CANDIDATE NUMBER. ConsultIDs: CVE-2014-6025. Reason: This candidate is a reservation duplicate of CVE-2014-6025. Notes: All CVE users should reference CVE-2014-6025 instead of this candidate. All references and descriptions in this candidate have been removed to pre...

CVE-2014-5523
Published: 2014-09-22
** REJECT ** DO NOT USE THIS CANDIDATE NUMBER. ConsultIDs: CVE-2014-5524. Reason: This candidate is a duplicate of CVE-2014-5524. Notes: All CVE users should reference CVE-2014-5524 instead of this candidate. All references and descriptions in this candidate have been removed to prevent acciden...

CVE-2014-5575
Published: 2014-09-22
** REJECT ** DO NOT USE THIS CANDIDATE NUMBER. ConsultIDs: none. Reason: This candidate was withdrawn by its CNA. Further investigation showed that it was not a security issue. Notes: none.

CVE-2014-5665
Published: 2014-09-22
The Mzone Login (aka com.mr384.MzoneLogin) application 1.2.0 for Android does not verify X.509 certificates from SSL servers, which allows man-in-the-middle attackers to spoof servers and obtain sensitive information via a crafted certificate.

Best of the Web
Dark Reading Radio