Delta to use facial recognition for domestic passengers

Beginning this month, Delta will start using facial recognition for passengers on U.S. domestic flights out of Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport (DTW).

It means that passengers can use their digital identity in place of a physical ID and boarding pass.

Passengers can opt to use the biometric system that enables them to move through the Edward H. McNamara Terminal’s dedicated TSA PreCheck domestic checkpoint. Delta plans to add bag drop and boarding early this year.

To use the facial recognition system, passengers need a passport number and a TSA PreCheck membership. These are combined to create a digital ID. That digital ID is used by the system to check the live passenger is really the one in the ID.

If passengers don’t want to use the biometric system, they have to opt out and then proceed through the airport as normal.

Delta says it does not save or store any biometric data, nor does it plan to.

How it works

  • Passengers store their passport information and TSA PreCheck Known Traveler Number in their SkyMiles profile in the Fly Delta app
  • They opt into the program at check-in using the Fly Delta app
  • At the airport, cameras at facial biometrics checkpoints (bag drop, security checkpoint and boarding gate) capture the live biometric and send it to the U.S. CBP for verification
  • CBP verifies the identity against the CBP image gallery and sends back an indicator to allow the passenger to proceed (or not)

Delta first started using facial recognition in the U.S. in December 2018.

N.B. Image credit: Delta Air Lines

Internet links

Delta Air Lines (DL)

Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport (DTW)