Passports to be Replaced With Facial Recognition Technology in Australia by 2020

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The Department of Immigration and Border Protection has announced that a new Self-Processing System will soon be using facial recognition and fingerprints to replace passports at Australian airports by 2019-2020.

The technology will be introduced later this year.

According to the Department of Immigration and Border Protection has announced a new self-processing system will be introduced later in the year, that will use facial recognition and fingerprints to replace passports at Australian airports by 2019-2020.

Benefits of the Upcoming System

According to the Immigration Minister Peter Dutton, the aim of this new technology is to avoid paperwork or manual processing by staff. The system is expected to reduce this by 90 percent.

“In many cases that will mean people, whilst they’ll still have to carry their passport, may not have to present their passport at all in the long term,” Dutton said.

“But in the immediate term, this will make it easier, it will make it quicker, for people going in and out of our airports.”

Dutton also mentioned that the $78 million upgrade would also boost security at Australian borders, as threats will be more detectable through an automated system.

“Already we know from the money we’ve invested into biometrics collections that that is a much more reliable collection than we have with people just scanning passports manually,” he explained.

“So there is the ability through this technology to improve detections of people that might be coming into our country to do the wrong thing.”

The reduced processing times will also likely boost tourism, Dutton says. He said the government is keeping an open mind for what the technology could be used for.

Other Countries Using Such Programs

Australia is not the first country to attempt to introduce such a program. This was already used by the US Customs and Border Protection, and in two airports: John F. Kennedy International Airport and Washington Dulles International Airport in 2015 and 2016.

However, this hasn’t been used to replace passports before.

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