After the event that changed the world, 9/11 2001, biometrics in deployment greatly expanded in response to hyper attention around global security.
Neal Latta, Assistant Administrator, at the Transportation Security Administration, opened Identity Week America 2023 stating TSA’s renewed pledge to facilitating free movement for people and commerce across 640 public-facing enrolment centres nationwide that have implemented identity management capabilities and vetting for travellers in 10 seconds or less.
Latta created one of the most memorable soundbites during TSA’s presentation.
“We saw a 4 million growth in PreCheck traveller numbers”, he confirmed, as he said the daily average of TSA preCheck enrolments reach 14,000. There are 17.3 active TSA PreCheck members.
The TSA PreCheck program expedites traveller screening through TSA security checkpoints, promising seamless processing in less than 10 seconds. The challenge to install an entry/exit system to process millions of travellers was met between the private sector and government.
Testing live scan technology, the TSA partnered with NIST has scrutinised vendors’ claims with public knowledge against matching performance independently.
The TSA was also positioned as the biggest agency of identity management information that underpins 950 million travellers for TSA.
23 million domestic flights per day and 2.5 million+ travellers are vetted every day via Secure Flight, according the company’s update during the conference. Producing roadmaps to affect future identity change – the identity management roadmap for one in 2022 – TSA’s main goals are to enhance credentials, identity proofing, and capabilities to combat new threats with policies and technology.
“We will expand enrolment networks to expand locations and allow more people to access the program” – John Latta, TSA.
Vetting capabilities have also been strengthened through the TSA’s open collaboration with the FBI, together delivering Grab back services which file FBI collected criminal records that will be shared back with the TSA for threat detection and customer service. While it used to be normal to surveil criminal checks every 5 years, sophisticated real-time criminal checks can be carried out with partner agencies and the holistic collection of biometrics which will match with offender profiles.
The TSA’s partners include the AAMVA, Motor Vehicle Entities, DMVs and air carriers. Responsible for installing security touchpoints at nearly 440 federalised airports, their relationship with the Customs & Border Protection has “never been better”, says Neal Latta, whose biometric deployment objectives since 9/11 have been converging with the TSA.