(TSA/Delta)

Delta and TSA Launch Digital ID Program

Delta Air Lines passengers will soon be able to use their passport number and TSA PreCheck® or Global Entry membership as a digital ID.

Delta customers at Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport will soon have the option to move through the airport faster and more easily. In partnership with the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), Delta is launching the first facial recognition option for domestic travelers using a digital ID made up of a customer’s passport number and TSA PreCheck® membership.

Beginning December 2020, customers traveling in the U.S. will be able to use that digital ID – verified by facial recognition technology – to move through the Edward H. McNamara Terminal’s dedicated TSA PreCheck domestic checkpoint. This will expand to bag drop and boarding in early 2021, making Detroit the first airport to have a facial recognition option from curb to gate for TSA PreCheck customers traveling domestically. This builds on Delta’s existing facial recognition option for any customer traveling to an international destination.

To be eligible to participate in the Detroit test, customers need a passport number and a TSA PreCheck membership. Facial recognition technology uses this information as a digital ID to confirm a traveler’s identity at airport touchpoints. 

If a customer does not want to use facial recognition, they can simply not opt in at check-in and proceed through the airport as they always have – as participation is completely voluntary. Delta does not save or store any biometric data, nor does it plan to.

Here’s how participating customers can use their digital identity:

  • Store passport information and TSA PreCheck Known Traveler Number securely in your SkyMiles profile in the Fly Delta app
  • Opt into the program at check-in using the Fly Delta app
  • At the airport, look into the camera at bag drop, the security checkpoint and the boarding gate to use the digital identity in place of a physical ID and boarding pass

Once a customer reaches a camera at the airport, their image is encrypted, stripped of biographic information and sent to U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) facial biometric matching service via a secure channel. CBP then verifies a customer’s identity against the CBP image gallery and sends back an indicator to allow the customer to proceed.

Since Delta launched the first biometric terminal in the U.S. in December 2018, the airline expanded facial recognition capabilities to eight new markets over the next year. Prior to that, Delta tested facial recognition with CBP for over three years in Atlanta, Detroit and New York-JFK – refining the experience along the way.

Read more at Delta 

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