Officers at U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) have noticed an increasing number of third-party sites attempting to mimic official U.S. government websites or claiming to assist with applying for the Trusted Traveler Programs (TTP), including Global Entry, Sentri, FAST and NEXUS. While this may seem like a convenient alternative, these companies can be quite expensive to the traveler and are not necessary.
Third-party companies that charge a fee to assist travelers in registering for TTP do not operate on behalf of the U.S. government. While not all of these organizations are illegal, some have gone so far as to mimic the CBP website. U.S. government websites can be identified by the “.gov” domain. CBP does not work with third-party companies for the purpose of processing TTP applications and cannot guarantee the legitimacy of these companies or the safety of travelers’ privacy.
Some travelers have reported paying fees without ever having their applications submitted, while others have paid hundreds on top of the application fee, which is currently $100 for Global Entry, $122.25 for Sentri, and $50 for NEXUS and FAST. The U.S. government cannot refund the money paid to a third-party website. Travelers can easily apply for or renew a TTP application on their own through the TTP website. For Global Entry, a traveler must have a valid passport, valid email address, telephone number, and home address.
CBP is committed to its privacy obligations and has taken steps to safeguard the privacy of all travelers. Information submitted by applicants through the TTP website is subject to strict privacy provisions and controls. Access to such information is limited to those with a professional need to know. The website is operated by the U.S. government and employs technology to prevent unauthorized access to the information entered and viewed. Information is protected and governed by U.S. laws and regulations, including, but not limited to, the Federal Information Security Management Act.
TTP supports CBP’s mission of securing U.S. borders while facilitating lawful travel and trade. These innovative programs allow over 10 million pre-approved, low-risk travelers to bypass traditional CBP inspection lines and receive expedited processing when entering the United States. Follow @CBP and visit ttp.dhs.gov for more information.