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American Airlines Expands Biometric Boarding to DFW

The move marks the second airport where the airline is testing the, for now, opt-in technology

August 29, 2019

American Airlines has started testing new biometric facial recognition technology at Terminal D at the Dallas Fort Worth International Airport, the carrier’s largest hub.

Passengers traveling on select international departures from DFW Terminal D can now test the convenience of the boarding technology during the departure process. Instead of scanning boarding passes, the new one-step facial recognition program will scan and verify a customer’s identity with U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) in seconds at the gate. According to American, no customer biometrics records will be collected and stored.

When customers begin the boarding process, the facial recognition program will scan an image of their face and send it to an existing cloud-based CBP database. The system then instantly matches the image against the passport photo already on file with CBP, and, if it sends back a yes, the customer is cleared to board within seconds at the gate. Otherwise, the agent will simply manually clear the customer using the regular clearance process.

American implemented a biometric boarding program at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) Terminal 4 earlier this year. The carrier will continue evaluating the program and its potential expansion to more locations and flights throughout its global network.

As the largest carrier at DFW, American offers 91 daily international departures to 63 destinations worldwide. The airline plans to expand biometric boarding to nearly 75 international gates at DFW throughout Terminals A, B, C and D by the end of this year.