Gatwick Airport is to trial an automated self-service boarding system using iris recognition technology.
Passengers drop there hold baggage at self-service bag drops, and enrol themselves biometrically via iris recognition technology.
IRIS makes use of the fact that the pattern of the iris in each person’s eye (the coloured part of each person’s eye) is unique.
Passengers use self-service gates to board aircraft by the combination of iris recognition and a valid boarding card.
Given the news this week about PRISM and the collection of data by US agencies, passengers have a clear right to be told exactly what is being captured, what it is being used for, who sees this and how long it is kept.
It is doubtful that passengers will be greeted with a warm smile when they ask for those details. There is no information at the time of writing on the Gatwick website about the trial or what happens to the data.
Editors’s note: I will be flying out of LGW North terminal this week and hope to be part of the trial.
It is the first time I’ve flown out of Gatwick for some years. I’m really looking forward to seeing the improvements made since the change of ownership.
I’ll post an update after my trip.