TSA introduces identity verification technology at Denver International

LinkedIn +

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) at Denver International Airport (DEN) in Colorado has deployed the next generation of Credential Authentication Technology (CAT) to verify the identity of travelers.

First-gen CATs are designed to scan a traveler’s photo identification and confirm their identity as well as flight details. The new CAT units, referred to as CAT-2, have the same capabilities but are also equipped with a camera that captures a real-time photo of the traveler.

CAT-2 compares the traveler’s photo on the identification credential against the in-person, real-time photo. Once the CAT-2 confirms the match, a TSA officer will verify and the traveler can proceed to security screening, without ever exchanging a boarding pass. TSA officers can perform additional passenger verification if needed. The technology is expected to improve a TSA officer’s ability to authenticate a guest’s photo identification while also identifying inconsistencies associated with fraudulent travel documents.

There are currently five CAT-2 units with digital readers in use at DEN and they are located in the North Security Checkpoint. These five units are in addition to 21 first-generation CAT units that are in use at each of the three DEN security checkpoints. Photos captured by CAT units are never stored or used for any other purpose than immediate identity verification. Travelers who do not wish to participate in the facial matching process can opt out in favor of an alternative identity verification process.

The CAT-2 units at DEN are equipped with readers that enable travelers to use state-issued digital driver licenses or digital identification cards for TSA identity verification purposes. The Colorado Department of Revenue announced that state residents could add their Colorado ID to Apple Wallet.

Earlier in 2022, the Arizona Motor Vehicle Division and Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration began offering the same capability to their residents who have a current, valid state-issued driver license or photo ID. Any traveler who has a state-issued digital ID in Apple Wallet can tap their iPhone or Apple Watch on a CAT-2 digital reader in lieu of providing a physical photo ID for identity verification. Residents should continue to carry their physical driver license or photo ID.

Larry Nau, federal security director for Colorado at TSA, said, “Identity verification of every traveler prior to flying is a key step in the security screening process. TSA embraces the use of this type of technology to enhance security and increase the efficiency of our operation. We are grateful for our partners locally who have been key in bringing this capability to DEN and for the investment TSA made in the security operations at DEN.”

Share this story:

About Author

, assistant editor

As the latest addition to the UKi Media & Events team, Elizabeth combines research skills from her English degree with a keen interest in the meteorological and transportation industries. Having taken the lead in student and startup publications, she has gained experience in editing online and print titles on a wide variety of topics. In her role as Assistant Editor, Elizabeth creates new and topical content on the pioneering technologies in transportation, logistics and meteorology.

Comments are closed.