Revolutionary Face Recognition System Installed at Airport

St. Petersburg-Clearwater International Airport Deploys Viisage Technology Face-Recognition Security
January 22, 2002 1:11:00 PM ET

Viisage Technology, Inc. VISG, the leader in face-recognition technology and identification systems and solutions, announced today that it has installed the first, fully operational facial recognition screening system in Florida at the St. Petersburg-Clearwater International Airport.

The system, which is being provided by the Pinellas County Sheriff`s Office with funding from the U.S. Department of Justice, will be in place at the two departure security checkpoints in the airport. St. Petersburg joins Fresno International airport to become the second U.S. airport to install face-recognition technology to improve passenger security. Both airports are using Viisage`s FaceFINDER(TM)face-recognition technology. Ticketed passengers will be checked against a database of Federal, State and local violent and wanted criminals as part of regular security procedures.

This project represents a partnership between the Pinellas County Sheriff`s Office, St. Petersburg-Clearwater International Airport and America Trans Air (ATA) Airlines for the implementation of Viisage`s FaceFINDER technology. With the implementation of this system, and with established procedures and agreements between law enforcement, Pinellas County and the airlines in place, the St. Petersburg-Clearwater International Airport will become the first airport in Florida to have a fully functional facial recognition system permanently in place. David Metz, Director of the St. Petersburg-Clearwater Airport, said, “We are delighted that, with the Sheriff`s support, we are able to take this practical step to dramatically improve security measures for our passengers. Using Viisage`s technology, we are adding another level of security to protect the traveling public and help restore confidence in the safety of air travel.”

Viisage is already providing the Pinellas County Sheriff`s Office with face-recognition technology to aid investigations as well as providing an inmate booking system integrated with face-recognition technology. Speaking about the new airport installation, Pinellas County Sheriff, Everett Rice, said, “In the aftermath of September 11th, the Pinellas County Sheriff`s Office felt that it was vital this technology be deployed at the St. Petersburg-Clearwater International Airport. The dedication from Viisage in designing and implementing this system for our airport is further testament to the exemplary performance that we have come to expect from the company.”


Tom Colatosti, Viisage president and CEO, said, “It is a pleasure to work with the Pinellas County law enforcement team under the leadership of Sheriff Rice. It is impressive to be part of a visionary team that is committed to using technology to more effectively provide law enforcement to protect and secure public safety. I am confident that Viisage`s unmatched record of successful face recognition deployments will provide the St. Petersburg-Clearwater International Airport the safety and security that Floridians and travelers want and expect.”