Last year, JetBlue praised itself for being the first domestic airline to launch fully-integrated biometric scanning for passengers to board international flights. The carrier launched the program at a few airports previously and was pleased with the success. JetBlue is now expanding that program in the hopes of using it for more international flights.
The biometrics system takes your picture. Your picture is then compared to a database held by the United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and if it matches, you are allowed to board. The system has a 98 percent effectiveness rate, and it has significantly cut down the time it takes for passengers to board the plane.
JetBlue stated that it does not have direct access to any of the photos or information. The carrier also does not keep any records of the photos. The pictures held by the DHS are from passport photos, visa applications or other previous interactions with the U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
The DHS, working through U.S. Customs and Border Protection, is hoping to have a full implementation of facial recognition technology in all airports within the next four years. The government believes that this is a more accurate and efficient way to track travelers, while the airline is appreciative of the reduction in time taken to get people cleared to board their flights.
At this time, JetBlue shared that over 50,000 of its customers across 500 different flights have participated in biometric boarding since its launch in 2017 in several cities The airline has stated, however, that you are more than welcome to decline this boarding procedure and go through the regular security and boarding pass option, at least for now