Okay, so we all know whenever we enter an airport, they (whoever “they” are anymore) are always watching us.
There are TSA agents peppered around the terminal and dome cameras in the ceiling serving to remind you – you are never alone.
But the latest security trend seems to be gearing towards a complete biometric facial recognition system that will allow you to do everything from checking in, to boarding your plane – just by scanning your face.
And all that data they’re collecting on you has to go somewhere, right?
What once seemed like a weird sci-fi movie or libertarian conspiracy theory is actually happening in airports across the world.
Boasting their “largest biometric technology” rollout, London Heathrow Airport dropped nearly £50 million to have more than 400 facial recognition cameras installed around the airport!
These cameras will allow travelers to check-in, get through security, and board their planes all by scanning their faces.
Think about it for a minute – by scanning your face and using it as a way to “identify” you, countless bureaucrats will be able to access everything about you all in one database… where you go… what you buy… areas you frequent.
There’s no telling who will have access to you and what they will do with your information.
Gone will be the days of being anonymous – your face will basically be your new social security card. Except you can’t conceal it.
Of course, advocates claim it makes travel “seamless” since travelers will not have to worry about boarding passes and stopping.
I don’t know about you…
… but I’m certainly not comfortable walking through an airport and having to scan my face to check-in or board a plane.
Big brother already has a enough data on me and who really knows how it’s being handled or stored.
And here’s the thing – the government will always try and institute invasive policies for the sake of “national security.” But we all know they’ll say anything to have more control over people.
As if not being allowed to travel with a bottle of water or lotion is going to stop terrorism? Give me a break.
And of course with COVID-19, big brother advocates are pushing biometric technology even more, claiming it makes people “safer”.
Talk about exploiting a pandemic.
And if you think facial recognition cams are just an international thing… guess again. In fact, I experienced it a few times personally.
Each time I returned from El Salvador and entered the checkpoint “welcoming” me back into the U.S., not only did they check and scan my passport, but they made me stare into a camera to “recognize” my face.
But when it’s 2am and I’m exhausted from a long flight – like everyone else – I just want to get through the process and go home.
As for your data…
The TSA’s website states:
“TSA is committed to protecting passenger privacy and secures all personal data collected as part of our biometric efforts. TSA will continue to comply with DHS policies with respect to safeguarding PII throughout each phase of biometric solution development – from initial design to implementation – to protect traveler information. Additionally, all capabilities TSA tests adhere to DHS and TSA cybersecurity requirements.”
Apparently this program is completely optional and you can “opt out”.
But I bet your average traveler doesn’t know that.
And it’s not like any of us ever opted into the government capturing biometric data on innocent American citizens to begin with.
But I digress.
So while not every airport in the U.S. has these (yet) – they’re coming.
As for the future of travel, expect to be tracked and identified everywhere you go. So say bon voyage to any sense of personal privacy.
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