Schiphol again experiments with boarding with facial recognition tech

Schiphol is again experimenting with facial recognition technology to reduce lines when boarding planes. This experiment involves airline Cathay Pacific. Instead of boarding a plane with your boarding pass and passport, travelers who want to participate in this experiment will have their face, boarding pass and passport scanned after check in. They can then board the plane with just a facial scan, reports.

"Ultimately, we want you to only have to scan your face at checkpoints", Schiphol spokesperson Dennis Muller said to the newspaper. The experiment will last a year. Schiphol wants to find out whether boarding with facial recognition is fast, efficient and reliable enough to implement it airport-wide.

According to Schiphol, the biometric data will be deleted 24 hours after registration. Passenger data will be stored encrypted in the Seamless Flow Platform, which is managed by Schiphol. "The operational partners only have access to the information that is relevant to then and that they are allowed to process by law", Muller said. "Passport data and the photo of the face are shared with the Koninklijke Marechaussee for the purpose of monitoring the registration and for the border process. The boarding pass data is verified with the airlines to check whether the passenger has a valid ticket and for the benefit of the boarding process. Finally, all data is processed in Schiphol systems."

For this experiment, Schiphol is cooperating with Cathay Pacific, the Ministry of Defense under which the Koninklijke Marechaussee falls, and company Vision-Box, which supplies the equipment and software. 

The necessary sensors will be installed at "one or two gates" - G03 and G04 - Muller said. Schiphol will try to make sure that boarding for all Cathay Pacific flights happen through these gates. Cathay Pacific travelers who want to participate in this experiment must be 16 years old or older. 

In 2017 Schiphol also experimented with facial recognition boarding with KLM. This experiment lasted three months. 

In "a few months" time, Schiphol also wants to experiment with passport control being replaced by facial recognition after the luggage check, Muller said to the newspaper.