Facial recognition system implemented at Incheon AirportBy Lee Yoon-seo
Published : July 28, 2023 - 14:09
Incheon Airport said it has begun utilizing preregistered facial information to streamline the departure process for passengers from Friday.
Dubbed the "facial recognition smart pass service," the newly launched service will allow passengers to quickly pass through the identification process at departure and boarding gates without having to show their passports and boarding passes to security personnel.
The service is available at six departure gates and 16 boarding gates at Incheon Airport, starting Friday. Full implementation of the system across all facilities at Incheon Airport is scheduled from April 2025.
The airport aims to eliminate the repetitive process of travel document examinations for its staff and customers.
"We expect that this introduction of smart pass service in time for the peak summer season (for overseas trips) will greatly help ease congestion caused at airports," said Incheon International Airport Corp. President Lee Hag-jae.
The usage of the service is currently limited to passengers who travel with Korean Air, Asiana Airlines, Jeju Air, Jin Air, T-way Air and Delta Air Lines. After the full implementation of the service in 2025, the airport said it aims to expand the use of the service to passengers of other airlines.
"The level of aviation security is expected to increase significantly (with this service) as human biometric information is difficult to falsify and duplicate, due to its unique characteristics," an Incheon Airport official said.
But he also emphasized that passports and boarding passes should be carried at all times, as the documents will still needed to be submitted for assessment during the immigration inspection process.
In order to use the new service, a passenger must either download the ICN Smartpass application on their phones from Apple's App Store or the Google Play store, or use the self check-in kiosk machines at the airport to register their facial information into the smart pass service. Such processes must take place 30 minutes prior to using the service at the departure gates or boarding gates, in order for the facial recognition service to upload the passenger's biometric information into the system.
The information, once uploaded to either of machines, can be used for five years, starting from the registration point.
Both Korean and foreign nationals can use the service, which will be available in English, Chinese, Japanese and Korean.
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