Unisys Next Generation Airport Passenger Security Solution Delivers Enhanced Security for Air Travel Consumers Worldwide

New solution builds on Unisys experience with advanced biometric technologies to enhance security, speed passenger processing time and reduce costs

Apr 13, 2010, 08:00 ET from Unisys Corporation

BLUE BELL, Pa., April 13 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Unisys Corporation (NYSE: UIS) today announced its Next Generation Airport Passenger Security Solution, aimed at helping commercial airlines and airports speed passenger processing time, reduce costs and create a more secure and convenient experience for air travelers around the world.

Unisys, a leading integrator of security solutions for private and public sector organizations worldwide as well as a longtime provider of technology solutions to airports and the airline industry, is bringing together these capabilities to address a growing problem in air travel today: long departure lines, flight delays and dissatisfied travelers due to inconvenient procedures.

Drawing on the company's experience with the aviation industry and advanced biometric-based security solutions for governments and commercial organizations, the new Unisys solution will integrate the various stages of the air passenger experience with a biometric component to uniquely identify each passenger. The end-to-end solution covers the key touch points of air travel: from electronic boarding passes, to boarding plane, to passing through immigration, to baggage collection.

"Travelers around the world are being squeezed by a growing number of critical but costly and inconvenient airport security procedures that are taking the joy out of traveling," said Terry Hartmann, vice president, identity and credentialing global practice, Unisys. "With the technologies we have today, air travel doesn't have to be such a difficult experience. Unisys has extensive experience applying advanced biometric technology to address the most demanding identification challenges, and we look forward to helping airports, airlines and immigration agencies make better use of these technologies to bring a new level of convenience and efficiency to air travel."

The new solution, which comprises a range of Unisys services and software, is based on the proven Unisys LEIDA (Library of eID Artifacts software) framework, which creates software building blocks that accelerate the time needed to develop and implement identity and credentialing solutions. Unisys will integrate its own software solutions with best-of-breed components from its partners in the areas of biometrics and identity management.

Reducing the Hassles of Air Travel

The Unisys solution will take advantage of the ongoing transition in many countries to biometric electronic passports, or "e-passports," which feature embedded biometric data about the traveler within the documents. Using the LEIDA framework, coupled with its existing Airport Passenger Processing Solutions, Unisys will integrate this passport data with other biometrically-captured identification information to greatly speed the air passenger process. This integration will help address many of the hot topics in the aviation industry today – such as those being addressed by the International Air Transport Association's Fast Travel program to create standards and recommended practices for self-service options to improve the air travel experience.

"This new solution helps to address the very tricky equation of satisfying airport security requirements, while maintaining or improving passenger service and processing efficiency," said Haakan Andersson, director of airports at Unisys.

Here's how the new process would work for the typical passenger:

Before purchasing tickets online, travelers would provide passport and/or biometric information to the relevant authorities. Travelers checking in online could choose to have mobile boarding passes with a 2D barcode sent to their mobile phones, eliminating the need for paper boarding passes.

Upon arrival at the airport, they would proceed to a self-service or agent-operated bag drop, where their identities, e-passports and electronic boarding passes would be checked and matched using biometric technology to verify their identities. The solution also has included a capability to allow travelers, in the future, to preprint their own baggage tags to bypass airport bag-tag print queues.

Using the biometric technologies of facial recognition, fingerprint scans and iris recognition, passenger identities could be quickly verified at each security checkpoint, as well as other locations such as airline lounges. Travelers would then have plenty of time for shopping or dining, before proceeding to the departure gates where biometrics would also be used to confirm that all travelers and their luggage have made it on board – and that all travelers, their travel documents and boarding passes are uniquely matched.  

Upon arrival, passengers traveling to international destinations would use their biometric-enabled e-passports at automated immigration gates to verify their entitlement to enter the country. If verified, they would be able to immediately proceed to baggage claim areas – bypassing long lines and the hassle often associated with waiting in line for manual immigration checks.

Consumer readiness for the solution was underscored by the latest results (http://www.unisys.com/unisys/news/detail.jsp?id=1120000970001910179) of its bi-annual Unisys Security Index, also announced today, which revealed that consumers worldwide are willing to sacrifice some level of privacy to increase safety when traveling by air. For example, 72% of U.S. citizens said they would be willing to provide personal data in advance of air travel to increase security. Elsewhere, 91% of citizens in the United Kingdom and 68% of Australians said they would provide biometric data to increase flight security.

This Next Generation Airport Passenger Security Solution builds on Unisys longstanding aviation and security expertise in successfully integrating communications and security networks. Unisys has worked with some of the world's major airports including the Los Angeles World Airports, the Beijing Capital International Airport, the Delhi International Airport and the Madrid/Barcelona airports in managing their integrated security systems. Unisys systems and servers are currently used to check-in almost a third of the world's passengers, with over 200 airlines and 600 airports around the world using Unisys solutions.

The solution also leverages Unisys experience as a leading provider of integrated identity credentialing solutions in countries such as the United States, Mexico, Malaysia, Australia, Canada, South Africa, Angola, Chile, Philippines, Costa Rica and Spain. In addition, Unisys will bring in its experience with U.S. government projects such as the U.S. Army In-Transit Visibility program for tracking equipment and the award-winning U.S. Customs and Border Protection Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative for identifying travelers crossing U.S. land borders.

About Unisys

Unisys is a worldwide information technology company. We provide a portfolio of IT services, software, and technology that solves critical problems for clients. We specialize in helping clients secure their operations, increase the efficiency and utilization of their data centers, enhance support to their end users and constituents, and modernize their enterprise applications. To provide these services and solutions, we bring together offerings and capabilities in outsourcing services, systems integration and consulting services, infrastructure services, maintenance services, and high-end server technology. With approximately 25,000 employees, Unisys serves commercial organizations and government agencies throughout the world. For more information, visit www.unisys.com.

RELEASE NO.: 0413/8963

Unisys is a registered trademark of Unisys Corporation. All other brands and products referenced herein are acknowledged to be trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders.

SOURCE Unisys Corporation