Page 17 - Security Today, January/February 2021
P. 17

“The industry must be prepared for a new age of travel and responsive to the risk of future pandemics. Thinking ahead – what preparations are appropriate and possible?”
By John Mears
teraction is at curbside check-in, where a “smart kiosk” can also include unobtrusive stand-off sensing and document reading featuresthatenhancesafepassage.
Safety and Self-service
To regain traveler confidence, it may be necessary for airports, transportation se- curity agencies, and/or airlines to provide some health assurance or testing services .
Questions have arisen regarding issuing QRC codes to healthy passengers. Should scanning their “healthy” QRC certifica- tions be part of the criteria for passage through eGates? If we do require health certificates to travel, will the government do this testing and issue the certificates, or will private industry – perhaps the medi- cal testing labs themselves – do this work? The idea of an electronic health record seems attractive. It could replace the yel- low vaccination record hardcopy booklet and shared as necessary to facilitate travel around the world. Such an electronic re- cord could not only include vaccination records, but also any tactical health certifi- cations such as COVID-19 status.
With respect to cleaning areas where travelers pass or reside within planes, there are a number of approaches. Leidos makes automated bin returns with UV-C sterilization in conjunction with anti- microbial bin coatings. Some airlines are also using UV-C lights or chemical foggers to disinfect cabins between flights .
What about detecting elevated body temperature for screening travelers with COVID-19 symptoms? At least one air- line is requiring temperature checks prior to boarding, using standard hand-held thermometers. There are a number of es- tablished approaches to stand-off thermal sensing, and some emerging approaches. The most well-known approach involves arrays of micro-bolometers, like those of FLIR . The Chinese have used IR cam- eras in conjunction with visible light face recognition. AI-assisted fever detection has also been implemented in conjunction with contact tracing of febrile (elevated body temperature) individuals and those who have come in close contact with them.
Changes in
Air Travel Processes
All of the stakeholders in the air travel pro- cess will need to work toward a common vision with options for different situations and airport configurations. To illustrate, we
offer the following figure to show different process and sensor options at each interac- tion point of the passenger journey.
The figure illustrates some major themes of this new age of air travel. There is a renewed emphasis on touchless inter- actions, voice-actuated interactions with automated electronic gate (eGate) activa- tion for checkpoint passage. Additional self-service processing options feature ac- tive and voluntary health-screening. Last but not least, there are frictionless hand- offs between airports and airlines, with care to safeguard a passenger’s privacy.
Touchless Interactions
One major theme in this emerging travel landscape is more touchless, or token-less, travel. In this regard, we sometimes hear phrases like “your face is your passport” or “your face is your boarding pass.” However, with travelers wearing masks, facial recognition technology is less ef- fective, leading to accommodations such as lowering masks for the brief period it takes to do face verification against iden- tity documents, in the case of a new TSA checkpoint application .
The increased use of face masks makes iris technology more attractive as a touch- less alternative, with the technology prov- en to be stable and accurate over a number of years of use in checkpoint services .
Touchless fingerprint recognition sen- sors (over which you just wave your hand) are being evaluated with the challenge to match their 3D fingerprint images against existing national fingerprint databases .
We will also see more autonomous screening operations and self-screening operations, with more unattended or lightly attended eGates. A case in point, the Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate and the Transportation Security Administra- tion have issued solicitations for a concept of “self-service checkpoint screening” .
Touchless interactions are facilitated by kiosk and eGate systems that use voice, ges- ture, gaze detection or kiosk control from your own smarkphone via QR codesv for commands and data entry. One such in-

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