Transportation Security Administration (TSA) at South Bend International Airport (SBN) in Indiana, the US, has deployed a credential authentication technology (CAT) unit that authenticates the validity of travellers’ identification (ID), along with their flight information, in near real time.
If a CAT unit is in use, passengers at the travel document checking station can be asked to insert or scan their photo identification on their own.
Through a secure internet connection, the CAT unit will verify whether an individual is ticketed for travel that day.
It will also ensure whether a passenger is eligible for TSA PreCheck or general security screening.
However, passengers will still have to check-in with their airline and display their boarding pass to the airline gate agent before boarding their flight.
TSA’s detection capabilities for identifying fraudulent and tampered documents will be enhanced through this technology.
CAT units are capable of authenticating several thousand types of IDs, including passports, permanent resident cards, US visas, driver’s licenses and photo IDs issued by state motor vehicle departments.
With the use of the CAT, a touchpoint in the security checkpoint will be reduced as it eliminates the need for a passenger to physically give their photo identification to the TSA officer.
Passengers are required to have their REAL ID-compliant driver’s license or other acceptable forms of identification by the 1 October 2021 REAL ID enforcement deadline. The CAT will not accept a driver’s license after this deadline if it is not REAL ID-compliant.
In November, TSA at Daytona Beach International Airport (DAB) in Florida, started using an advanced computed tomography (CT) scanner at its security checkpoint.
When the CT is in use, passengers can refrain from removing electronics, food or travel-size liquids from their carry-on luggage.
Passengers under the TSA Precheck programme have this convenience regardless of whether the CT is in use or not.