Homeland Security Watch

News and analysis of critical issues in homeland security

December 30, 2005

DHS testing RFID e-passports at SFO

Filed under: Technology for HLS — by Christian Beckner on December 30, 2005

According to this story today in Information Week, DHS is going to begin testing RFID passports at SFO:

The Department of Homeland Security will begin testing passports embedded with radio frequency identification (RFID) technology at the San Francisco International Airport mid-January, a spokesperson for the agency said Friday.

Australia, New Zealand and Singapore have begun to issue passports to travelers with RFID chips. Many pass through the San Francisco, making it a likely location to test the technology, according to Anna Hinken, a US-Visit spokesperson at the Department of Homeland Security. “We’re bringing technology to the borders and chose RFID as one to help reach the goals of expediting safe entrance into the United States,” she said.

And the story details new tests on the way:

And there are more trials underway. RFID chips have been embedded in I-94 forms. People who frequently cross U.S. borders to work, for example, are required to carry these forms. Tests at the five border crossings will continue through spring 2006. A formal evaluation on the project is scheduled by March. The department will then make a decision on whether to continue the program. Since August, the US-Visit program has tested forms with RFID at five United States border crossings: two in Nogales Ariz.; two in Blaine, Wash.; and one in Alexandria Bay, New York.

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