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Bulgarian International Airports implement Vision-Box®’s Automated Border Control eGates to improve passenger experience

Wednesday, January 14th, 2015

A new Automated Border Control solution has been inaugurated at the Varna and Burgas International Airports by the Bulgarian Ministry of Interior. Any passengers holding electronic machine-readable travel documents, citizens of EU, EEA and Switzerland over 18 years may now enjoy a seamless border crossing experience in both airports. The associated contract is co-financed  by the Bulgarian Ministry of Interior and EU, under Action 5 – ”Establishing automated border control for EU citizens”, Annual Program 2012-2013 of the External Borders Fund.

Accounting respectively for an estimated traffic of more than one and two million passengers per year, Varna and Burgas International Airports, the busiest in the country after Sofia’s, are now using Vision-Box®’s latest generation of Automated Border Control eGates to optimize passenger processing. The implementation of ABC technology represents a shift from the traditional border control to a new paradigm where biometric technology and self-service offer the perfect match. Passengers are in control of their own immigration process at the eGate, having their travel documents authenticated and their identity checked by way of face recognition and match against the biometrics templates embedded in the chip of the travel document (soon fingerprint will be available as well). No need to interact directly with the authorities at the border control point, which clears manual immigration lines.

Jean-François Lennon, Director of Global Business Development, Sales and Marketing at Vision-Box® believes that«In modern airports like Varna and Burgas, facing constantly increasing flows at the border, it is imperative to embrace new technologies that concede the traveler more control and better convenience during his journey, while delivering the most efficient and effective tools to the Border Control Authorities to increase their capacity». He added «Vision-Box® vb i-match® 5 offers a complete passenger experience package, combining intuitive and user-friendly interfaces with instructional animations and quick proactive adjustments to each traveler, which will make security processes less time-consuming and the Bulgarian Airports more welcoming and attractive for travelers. Everyone benefits!».

In fact, this means a clear improvement of the experience felt not only by the passengers who use the airports, but also by the Border Control authorities. Instead of following the traditional manual verification, more vulnerable to errors, Border Control officers are now taking advantage of highly dependable technology and transferring their focus to security procedures with greater added-value. Having real-time access to all processes happening at the eGates, by means of a fully integrated software platform, they overrule the system and act only in case of any issue is detected by the eGates (i.e. fraudulent Passport, unruly passenger…).

Furthermore, this single-sourced ABC solution is strengthening the Bulgarian Ministry of Interior with a self-integrated software platform, including improved levels of document authentication and biometric verification, supported by an advanced passenger monitoring application, which delivers relevant operational and analytical information to border authorities, help them reduce errors, correctly assess security risks and effectively monitor who enters and exits the country.

As for future developments, fingerprint will be activated to complement facial verification, making it the first multimodal biometric solution implemented in the Balkans! Meanwhile, Burgas Airport will expand the solution, adding more eGates to expedite passenger processing during 2015.

To better support the Bulgarian Ministry of Interior, Vision-Box® has celebrated a partnership with a national experimented, well established technology and service-driven company called Printec, which is providing local support services.

Vision-Box® successfully deploys state-of-the-art multibiometric Automated Border Clearance eGates at Hamad International Airport

Monday, September 15th, 2014

Recently opened and already a reference for innovation and passenger experience in the whole of the Middle East, Hamad International Airport is now the airport with one of the largest deployments of ABC eGates in the world.

The new ground-breaking Hamad International Airport (HIA) in Qatar was designed with customer experience to the fore. The result is a world-class facility, where the concept of hospitality underpins everything. Unsurprisingly, a seamless, memorable passenger journey was also the motto for the implementation of a state-of-the-art Border Control process at the Airport. Vision-Box®, leader in Automated Border Control solutions and expert in Passenger Experience, was contracted by the NDIA Steering Committee as the partner in charge of one of the largest deployments of eGates in one single airport.

The 62 vb i-match® eGates are already in use at the HIA, operated by Vision-Box®’s front-end Border Control application, the vb inspector®, and totally integrated with the advanced Identity Management Infrastructure of the Ministry of the Interior of the State of Qatar, ensuring the highest levels of security and efficiency.

The Vision-Box® eGates were exclusively designed to meet the Hamad International Airport performance and meticulous design requirements. The multimodal capabilities allow for the use of face, iris and fingerprint as biometric identifiers. They ensure a speedy passage time with maximum accuracy, offering state-of-the-art Automated Border Control to several different traveler profiles, while making sure that the border is secure and that the passenger has a pleasant experience.

Jean-François Lennon, Director Global Business Development, Sales & Marketing at Vision-Box®, emphasizes that this implementation represents one of the largest deployments of multimodal ABC eGates in the world, and on a single airport. Vision-Box® feels honored to be part of this world premiere airport project. “The Middle-East continues to represent an enormous potential. We’ve been witnessing an outburst of initiatives by Governments, Airports, Airlines and private sector adopting digital identity as a means to improve security and efficiency, and also to provide value-added services to their citizens. We look forward to further contributing to their success, both through on-going Identity Management programs and other GCC initiatives, by continuously delivering stunning innovation and investing in local resources”.

Biometric Solutions and Vision-Box win Danish deal

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

The Danish Government has awarded the consortium of Biometric Solutions and Vision-Box a four-year framework agreement for the procurement of biometric-based solutions and components for both Enrolment and Automated Border Control. Under this agreement the consortium will deliver biometric equipment and related services to, among others, the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA).

According to Vision-Box, the Danish Government aims to use the agreement to improve processes related to citizen’s electronic identity. The biometric technology provided by the consortium will be used in several Ministries’ missions for Danish citizen and foreigners’ enrolment for passport, visa and residence permits.

The Danish Government will use Vision-Box’s portfolio of advanced Identity Management solutions. One of the key parts of the whole solution will be a portable biographic and biometric enrolment and verification solution, the vb e-pass portable, an all-in-one unit that collects a citizen’s face and fingerprint biometric data, as well as their digital signature. According to Vision-Box, the versatility and size of vb e-pass portable are the key drivers for multiple applications, including extra mobility in citizen identification and enrolment, and enhanced security checks across the country.

Read more here!


Danish Government awards Vision-Box® and Biometric Solutions as preferred suppliers of biometric-based automated enrollment and border control solutions

Wednesday, August 27th, 2014

The Danish Government has awarded the consortium of Biometric Solutions and Vision-Box® with a 4-year framework agreement on the procurement of biometric-based solutions and components for both Enrollment and Automated Border Control. Under this agreement the consortium will deliver biometric equipment and related services to, among others, the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA).

By means of this framework agreement, the Danish Government intends to improve processes related to citizen’s electronic identity. The biometric technology provided by the consortium will be used in several Ministries’ missions for Danish citizen and foreigners’ enrollment for passport, visa and residence permits.

The Danish Government will thus be able to benefit from Vision-Box®’s large portfolio of advanced Identity Management solutions. One of the key parts of the whole solution will be a portable biographic and biometric enrollment & verification solution, the vb e-pass® portable, an all-in-one unit that collects a citizen’s face and fingerprint biometric data, as well as their digital signature. The versatility and size of vb e-pass® portable are the key drivers for multiple applications, including extra mobility in citizen identification and enrollment, and enhanced security checks across the country. The partner, Biometric Solutions, will contribute with its existing Enrollment portfolio, already deployed at Danish embassies and municipalities to enroll citizens in accordance with applicable rules and regulatory requirements.

“We look forward to working with the Danish Government, and our partner Biometric Solutions, to provide the best citizen experience ever. For that, we are committed to providing state-of-the-art technology, designed to offer more efficient and convenient services related to Electronic Identity.”, says Jean-François Lennon, Director of Global Business Development, Sales & Marketing at Vision-Box®.

Alex Ramskov Johannsen, CEO of Biometric Solutions, declares: “We are very happy that our collaboration with Vision-Box will help government institutions raise their service level for citizens around the world, while at the same time strengthening the security measures protecting citizens’ personal data.”

With this agreement, effective since February 2014, the two companies are consolidating their position in this region of the globe, where Vision-Box® has been the market leader for some years, with a strong presence in The Netherlands, Finland, Norway, Sweden, Latvia and Estonia, while Denmark is the native territory of Biometric Solutions.

SĂŁo Paulo International Airport to install innovative eGates

Tuesday, June 17th, 2014

SĂŁo Paulo International Airport (GRU Airport) will soon have an innovative process of immigration that aims to streamline the flow of passengers and reduce waiting times.

Latin America and Brazil’s busiest gateway in Guarulhos, will implement automated border control technology eGates, designed by Vision-Box.

The technology is already being tested in the new terminal and will be installed in Terminals 2 and 3 by the end of August.

Read more in Airport World.

SĂŁo Paulo International Airport will implement the latest Automated Border Control technology

Monday, June 16th, 2014

The solution designed by Vision-Box® is already being tested in the new terminal and will be installed in the international terminals by the end of August.

Brazilian passengers from GRU Airport – SĂŁo Paulo International Airport – in Guarulhos may soon enjoy an innovative process of immigration, which will streamline the flow of people and reduce waiting times. In August, Terminals 2 and 3 in Guarulhos (the latter opened on May 11th) will receive the latest Automated Border Control technology, which will allow passengers to control their own immigration and emigration processes autonomously, without the need to interact directly with the Brazilian Federal Police, provided they have a Brazilian electronic passport and are over 18 years old.

How does it work? As an alternative to the traditional and manual control of passports, the passenger can go directly to one of the eGates installed by Vision-Box®, through which they will only pass if the passport is authentic, if the passenger that is using it the real passport holder, and, finally, if the person can actually travel (e.g. has no criminal record prohibiting the trip). This is possible by way of advanced technology that allows for the verification of the authenticity of identification documents, as well as for the facial recognition of the passenger. The whole process is controlled remotely by the Federal Police, which will only intervene if any anomalies occur, thus freeing them for truly risky situations.

Working in self-service mode, the vb i-match® 5 e-Gates focus on user experience, with clear instructions, intuitive interfaces and automatic adjustments to each passenger (e.g., its height), capturing their facial image according to international quality standards such as ICAO. The process takes no more than a few seconds, which means a faster and less stressful experience for the passenger.

“Improving the passenger’s experience and the levels of security are priorities for the administration of the GRU Airport.”, says the Airport’s IT director, Luiz Ritzmann. “With the growth of demand recorded in the last decade in Brazil, the Airport infrastructure will increasingly require cutting-edge technology and optimized processes, which will streamline the flow of passengers in different areas (check-in, X-ray security, immigration and emigration control, customs and baggage claim). In this context, it is urgent to invest in the modernization of systems and equipment. And that’s what we are doing in Guarulhos”, Ritzmann explained.

The solution, designed by Vision-Box® and customized to meet the challenges of the largest airport in Latin America, is already installed in a proof of concept stage at Terminal 3. Leidivino Natal da Silva, Managing Director of Vision-Box® Latin America, states that “It is a privilege to be part of a project of this size and relevance for Brazil. The GRU Airport is facing the enormous challenge of accommodating millions of Brazilian passengers per year! And they are responding in the best way: with more security and more innovation! Vision-Box® Automated Border Control technology will match the level of demand, giving a new momentum to this new space.”

Vision-Box® is confident in this new challenge: the company has already deployed about 500 Automated Border Control solutions and 3000 digital identity management solutions for biometric capture worldwide!

Morpho and Vision-Box progress to testing stage for Australian biometric eGate contract

Thursday, May 29th, 2014

Morpho and Vision-Box are currently competing for a contract to deploy eGates in international airports throughout Australia.

Reported in ITNews, both companies have progressed into a testing stage for a two-year $8.4 million trial of the technology. 

Also from the ITNews report, Australia Customs awarded Morpho a contract related to eGates in 2004. This particular contract was worth $43 million and is applicable through to 2016.

Customs has reportedly received money to get software up to speed with the new eGates, and once funding for full-scale implementation is available, the government will be ready to kick off the new project.

Read more in Biometrics Update.

Aruba Airport Embraces Biometrics for the People

Thursday, May 22nd, 2014

The Aruba government is committed to implementing new technologies in order to improve the customer experience at the island’s airport. In support of this initiative it is holding the Happy Flow demo meeting with an aim to establish a pre-clearance situation between Aruba and The Netherlands.

Vision-Box has been selected by the committee behind this initiative for the second year in a row to trial its biometric border control technology.

Read the news in findBiometrics.

Portuguesa Vision-Box® está a revolucionar os aeroportos em todo o mundo

Tuesday, May 20th, 2014

Apenas uma empresa em todo o mundo foi selecionada para a mostra tecnológica que está a decorrer esta semana em Aruba ao largo da costa da Venezuela, num evento que reúne altas entidades da Europa e da América Latina, e que terá repercussão nas tecnologias que serão utilizadas nos aeroportos nos próximos anos para melhorar a experiência dos passageiros. A empresa é portuguesa e são altos os seus voos. 

Quem viaja com frequência facilmente compreenderá o porquê do enorme sucesso da Vision-Box® além fronteiras. É que a empresa está a revolucionar a experiência dos passageiros em mais de 30 aeroportos internacionais em todo o mundo, fornecendo soluções que vieram aumentar a segurança global, mas também simplificar os processos de controlo de passageiros e reduzir substancialmente as filas de espera.

Foi por isso a única empresa no mundo escolhida, após um rigoroso processo de seleção contra 10 concorrentes, para a mostra tecnológica  a decorrer esta semana em Aruba que reune o Primeiro Ministro de Aruba, os CEOs do grupo Schiphol, da KLM e do Aeroporto de Aruba, bem como o Vice-Ministro da Justiça Holandês, e que conta adicionalmente com a apresentação do primeiro voo da KLM de carburante “green”.

Com o mote de “Happy Flow”, o encontro “Europe Meets the Americas” tem vindo a funcionar como antevisão das novas tecnologias que os aeroportos de todo o mundo irão adotar nos próximos anos para melhorar a experiência dos passageiros ao longo do seu percurso dentro do aeroporto.

É na utilização da biometria que está a chave do conceito que a empresa levou na bagagem. Literalmente. Trata-se de uma nova visão do aeroporto em que, para passar os pontos de controlo do aeroporto (segurança, imigração ou embarque), o passageiro tem apenas que  olhar para uma câmara para que seja reconhecido e proceder ao passo seguinte, sem necessitar de apresentar documento de identificação ou cartão de embarque.

O processo é simples: ao chegar ao aeroporto, o passageiro dirige-se a um kiosk de check-in, que vai verificar a autenticidade do seu passaporte e recolher os seus dados biométricos. Essa informação, que constitui o «envelope virtual do passageiro» é armazenada e partilhada através de um modelo seguro de partilha de dados com as entidades aeroportuárias, a sua linha aérea e autoridades de fronteira. A partir deste momento, o passageiro poderá utilizar os serviços self-service de entrega de bagagem e cruzar todos os pontos de controlo do aeroporto (controlo de acessos, imigração e embarque) utilizando apenas aquilo que, de forma mais exata e inequívoca, o identifica – a sua biometria, neste caso o reconhecimento da sua face.

O percurso do passageiro ao longo do aeroporto é 100% self-service, dando ao passageiro o completo controlo da sua viagem. Deixa de exigir a interação com agentes da polícia, segurança ou linhas aéreas, e dispensa a apresentação de documentação e verificação manual de documentos. Maior fluidez, rapidez e comodidade são o resultado aos olhos do passageiro.

«Levámos o conceito de “Happy Flow” à letra. Queremos não só melhorar a experiência do passageiro, melhorando os processos de gestão de pessoas nos aeroportos, mas também fazer os passageiros realmente mais felizes. Os nossos kiosks ajustam-se automaticamente à altura dos passageiros, as nossas eGates dão-lhes as boas-vindas na sua língua e utilizando o seu nome. É um conceito absolutamente inovador que se tornará o standard nos aeroportos nos próximos anos.», afirma Jean-François Lennon, Diretor Global de Desenvolvimento de Negócios, Vendas e Marketing da Vision-Box®.

A Vision-Box® está assim na vanguarda, ditanto as tendências e entregando as mais inovadoras soluções baseadas em biometria, desde kiosks de Check-In, soluções para entrega de bagagem mediante verificação biométrica do passageiro, e uma linha completa de eGates já conhecida no mercado por vb i-match®. Não é de admirar: a empresa foi pioneira no desenvolvimento e comercialização do primeiro sistema de controlo automático de fronteiras por verificação de identidade através da face, e tem hoje mais de 400 soluções de controlo de fronteiras em 30 aeroportos internacionais em vários países da Europa, bem como nos Estados Unidos, Brasil, Colômbia, Venezuela, Austrália, Qatar, Rwanda, entre outros.

É também conhecida em Portugal pelas suas soluções de gestão de identidade digital, nomeadamente os kiosks para recolha biométrica nas Lojas do Cidadão. Mas também aqui a empresa faz altos voos: 3000 soluções instaladas em todo o mundo para registo de cidadãos no âmbito do Passaporte Eletrónico, Cartão de Identidade, Carta de Condução, Cartão de Eleitor, e outros documentos, com mais de 250 milhões de utilizadores por todo o mundo.

Vision-Box® reveals the ultimate passenger experience at the Aruba Airport

Friday, May 16th, 2014

At the world showroom for innovation in passenger experience in Aruba, where Europe meets the Americas, the renowned leader in biometric solutions for airport proposes a documentless traveler “Happy Flow”.

Airports and Airlines of reference around the world are gradually more engaged in finding ways to ensure a positive passenger experience while guaranteeing the highest standards of security and safety in airports. Vision-Box® is showing the direction this week in Aruba at the Happy Flow demo meeting, an initiative launched by the Government of Aruba intended to implement innovative technologies to improve airport experience in Aruba’s airport and to establish a pre-clearance situation between Aruba and The Netherlands. The event gathers the initiative’s steering committee consisting of the Prime Minister of Aruba, the CEOs of the Schiphol Group, KLM and Aruba Airport, the Vice-Minister of the Ministry of Justice of The Netherlands, and is combined with other initiatives, such as the presentation of the first KLM biofuel flight.

For the second year, Vision-Box® was the company selected, after a rigorous tendering process, to present a live demonstration of the “Aruba Happy Flow”, a concept that will not only improve processes in Aruba but shape the future of passenger experience in airports worldwide in the next years.

The focus of the “Aruba Happy Flow” is to offer passengers a seamless, fast, intuitive and secure ground process through the use of the latest face recognition technology and state-of-the-art self-service equipment at every control point of the airport. But what else is so special about this concept? Jean-François Lennon, Director of Global Business Development, Sales & Marketing at Vision-Box® answers: “This project is indeed a revolution in the airport ecosystem. For the first time ever, biometrics is being used as the main passenger identification token in an airport. Instead of using either a passport or a boarding pass, the passenger swiftly goes through all airport control points where he simply has to have his identity checked by looking at facial recognition cameras”.

By setting up a pre-clearance process between Aruba and The Netherlands, for example if a passenger is identified as ineligible to enter the destination country or unable to fly for safety reasons, the airline will be immediately notified and be able to activate the adequate security measures. «Emphasis is on preventive measures, not on reactive ones» explains the security specialist Jean-François Lennon. And he adds: «The relevance of the pre-clearance initiative is world-ranging. It means these countries are building a broad-based platform for further cooperation and intelligence exchange, which will be a case study of world relevance for more cooperative, efficient and reliable border management around the world».

We won’t have to wait much longer to see the Happy Flow in a real environment. A permanent pilot project is planned to be implemented before the end of 2014, and will make Aruba the place to visit!


Editorial Contact

Vision-Box® Headquarters

Catarina Meleiro


T: +351 912361611

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