Research released from Scandinavian
Airlines reveals that there is considerable support from air
travellers for the introduction of biometric security measures.SAS regularly canvasses more than 500 members of its frequent flier
programme, EuroBonus, to gauge members’ views on their business travel
needs. Just over half of respondents (53 per cent) believe that the
introduction of biometric security will help protect passenger identity
and restore confidence in airport security.
SAS’ latest survey demonstrates that educating passengers about
biometric security is an increasingly important issue for the aviation
industry. Sixty per cent of the respondents agreed that government and
immigration agencies should be able to share biometric information.
Whilst over half the respondents are in favour of the introduction of
biometric security, over a third (36 per cent) admitted that they did
not know enough about biometric security to make an informed decision.
A further 11 per cent of respondents felt the introduction of biometric
security would result in an invasion of their privacy.
Just under eighty per cent (79 per cent) of respondents felt that the
government should foot the bill for the additional costs that the
introduction of biometric security will bring. Eleven per cent felt the
airports should cover the cost of biometric security and just ten per
cent of respondents believed that passengers themselves should pay.
SAS became the first airline in the world to introduce biometric
security checks (18 September 2006), when the airline commenced trials
at Lulea in Sweden. Passengers checking in baggage have their index
finger scanned and their fingerprint recorded. The information is stored
in SAS’ passenger register and correlates with the details on the
baggage tag. A second fingerprint scan is carried out at the departure
gate, ensuring that the person who checked in the baggage is the same
person who boards the aircraft.
All information is automatically erased when the customer completes the
journey*. SAS’ ultimate plan is to roll out biometric security across
Sweden, Norway and Denmark.
Lars Ove-Filipson, General Manager SAS UK & Ireland said: “SAS has
always been at the forefront of technological innovation and we are
delighted to be setting the global bench mark for biometric security
with our trials in Sweden. Our latest research demonstrates the need to
introduce biometric security in a clear and structured manner so that
the travelling public feels informed. SAS is dedicated to ensuring that
air travel is efficient and biometric security saves time for customers