Major Indian airports to get facial recognition system by March 2023

The facial recognition system is planned at Delhi, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Pune, Kolkata, Varanasi and Vijayawada airports by March 2023, the government told the Parliament on Monday, April 4.

Facial recognition is a part of the government’s ‘Digi Yatra’ initiative aimed at providing passengers with a seamless experience at airports, Minister of State for Civil Aviation General VK Singh told the Lok Sabha.

The preliminary testing of these systems along with registration for the ‘Day of Travel’ has been completed at the aforementioned airports, he said and noted that the security requirement is dynamic.

Major airports of India to get facial recognition system by March 2023

He added that the civil aviation security regulator — Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) — reviews the security arrangements at airports from time to time and upgrades the same as per requirement in consultation with other agencies and stakeholders.

“The Digi Yatra Central Ecosystem envisages assessments (by independent teams to assess the level of security and system resilience to protect PII) and periodic audits by governing or regulatory bodies twice every year,” Singh had explained in the previous Parliament session in December last year.

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The facial recognition system is as per industry ISO standards with the best-in-class National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) listed algorithms complying with data privacy and data protection requirement as laid down by the government.

The preliminary testing of these systems along with registration for the ‘Day of Travel’ has been completed at the aforementioned airports

Singh had also underscored that people who do not want to avail of this will have an option to not send in data and use the existing manual process at airports.

Data shared by the passengers will be used for the purpose defined and won’t be shared with any other external shareholders. This data will not be retained during their transit at the airport and will not be retained for more than 24 hours after departure.

Facial Recognition

Facial recognition is a type of image identification technology. These technologies rely on many of the processes and techniques associated with artificial intelligence (AI). In particular, applications tend to use machine learning to classify subjects at speed and scale.

Facial recognition is a type of image identification technology.

This technology is widely in use to unlock smartphones, tablets and other such devices. It is also used by some countries to verify someone’s identity at border control. Provided the core human rights protections are followed, one-to-one facial identification has a relatively low-risk profile with its current usage.

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