One of the little-noticed provisions of the Trump travel ban executive order was to prioritize exit controls at the border. This wasn’t just about who was coming into the country but also who is allowed to fly out.
A plan to tackle departure monitoring for visitors to the United States has been law for 24 years but hadn’t been implemented due to cost and physical practicality. The Obama was working on a similar plan they hoped to implement by 2020.
Copyright: andreyuu / 123RF Stock Photo
The Department of Homeland Security, along with several airlines, have been testing ‘biometric boarding’ at airports around the country. Error rates are significant as are system outages.
A year ago we learned DHS planned to require all citizens to have their photos taken in order to leave the country. Now it’s become officially part of the agency’s regulatory agenda.
To facilitate the implementation of a seamless biometric entry-exit system that uses facial recognition … DHS is proposing to amend the regulations to provide that all travelers, including U.S. citizens, may be required to be photographed upon entry and/or departure [to or from the U.S.].
Copyright: prestonia / 123RF Stock Photo
We’re told to expect a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to require photographs of U.S. citizens leaving or returning to the U.S. this summer, although current law only provides for this to be a requirement for non-citizens. It will take an interesting argument, such as photographing of citizens being necessary to control illegal immigration, in order to make this work.
Government-mandated biomatric data, by the way, will be shared with airlines and others for commercial purposes. That’s how they’re working to get airlines to pay for this.