Passengers welcome SITA's biometric gates at Dublin airport

Date: 10 May 2013
Location: Dublin


Certain passengers arriving at Dublin Airport are able to avail of self-service immigration control at Ireland's borders thanks to a pilot of automated border control (ABC) gates put in place by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service(INIS) and the Dublin Airport Authority (DAA).

As part of this project, SITA's iBorders biometric gates use the latest biometric technology to identify each passenger through facial recognition. They rapidly verify the passenger is the passport holder and is authorized to access the country. SITA's gates at Dublin Airport are currently processing up to 1,000 passengers a day, in as few as 7.5 seconds each.

SITA joined forces with the Irish authorities to explore both passenger acceptance and the efficiency of the gates as European Union member states implement recommendations to move to self-service border control using ABC gates.  

Minister for Justice, Equality and Defence, Mr. Alan Shatter, T.D said: "Border control arrangements at Dublin Airport are currently undergoing major change. Immigration control processes are being reviewed and leading-edge border technology such as automated gates is being tested.

"Many major European airports are adopting a similar trend towards the deployment of automated gates for immigration control functions to enhance passengers' experience on arrival at airports while also strengthening border security. The trial period will test the suitability of e-gates for use at Dublin airport with a view to providing a more secure and efficient means for clearing passengers through immigration control. I look forward to receiving recommendations on the future use of such technology on conclusion of the trials."

SITA uses the latest biometric technology to provide accurate and fast checks of passengers. The system captures the individual's biometric - in Dublin this is facial recognition - cross checks it with the biometric contained on the passport and against border authority checklists, and verifies access in a matter of seconds.

A core element in this solution is NEC's unsurpassed "NeoFace" face recognition software which provides high accuracy and selectivity regardless of the database size and image quality. In independent tests commissioned by the US Government, this technology has been proven to be twice as fast as any other biometrics in the market and eight times more accurate.1 This, combined with the sophisticated gates provided by Kaba, results in a seamless experience for the passenger and the removal of the "stand for a photo" request that most other systems require.

Dan Ebbinghaus, SITA Vice President, Government Solutions, said: "SITA has extensive experience in dealing with the challenges facing border control authorities around the globe; in the region of 30 Governments use our iBorders systems to keep their borders secure. Our gates in use in Dublin provide a fast and seamless experience for the passenger. Importantly, because they combine our air transport industry experience and market knowledge with the fastest and most accurate face recognition software in the market, they also ensure accuracy and speed for border control and airport authorities." 

SITA's gates will be at Dublin Airport until October by which time it is expected they will have allowed thousands of arriving passenger to enter Ireland quickly and securely.

1 SITA’s gates incorporate NEC face recognition technologies which were ranked No. 1 in the MBE Still-Face Track in 2010 carried out by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).