IATA Launches Digital ID security initiative

has announced the launch of an initiative for a global standard for the digital identification of travellers, in an effort to enhance passenger travel security.

The `secure-travel` (s-Travel) project will include digital authentication of people to enable secure physical and electronic airline and airport processing for frequent air travellers. The project will develop and implement systems to authenticate passengers at both check-in and boarding stages, based on modification to the airlines` Departure Control Systems (DCS).


Later this year, the European Commission (EC) and Swiss Office for Education and Science funded consortium will undertake trials in Europe, with the intention of the service being expanded globally.



Commenting on the initiative, IATA Director General and CEO Pierre J. Jeanniot
, said: “Strict procedures need to be followed to ensure the proper authentication of individuals and IATA`s participation in this initiative will involve defining the optimum enrolment procedures and processes. This will contribute to the definition of global standards that will help secure the air transportation system and improve passenger confidence.”


Director General John Watson commented: “SITA is spearheading the development of a global aviation community solution that aims to greatly enhance passenger travel security. SITA has a long tradition of serving the needs of aviation as a neutral provider, deploying community solutions - many of which are now industry standards. Community solutions enable applications to be shared, giving access to the latest technologies while significantly driving down costs.”


The s-Travel initiative will combine digital certificates (provided jointly by SITA - the provider of global information and telecommunications solutions to the air transport industry - and IATA), smart-cards (GEMPLUS) and biometric technology integration (KEYWARE). To ensure that the s-Travel system does not infringe upon the privacy of frequent travellers the consortium said it will work closely with the EC and relevant data commissioners to resolve confidentiality issues. 


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