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Face recognition set for NRT

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#1 reader



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Posted 09 June 2018 - 04:49 AM

From NHK Newsline




Japan's main international hub, Narita Airport, will start using facial recognition technology at immigration gates to shorten screening time and improve security.

The Immigration Bureau demonstrated the technology to the media on Friday ahead of its debut next Monday.

The gates compare a traveler's passport photo with an image taken on the spot. When the 2 images match, the gates open automatically.

Until now, one official has been assigned per gate. The bureau says a single official will now be able to handle 6 gates.

The bureau initially plans to use the gates for Japanese nationals returning home and to assign more staff to screen the growing number of overseas visitors.

Facial recognition gates are to be introduced at 4 other airports across Japan later this year.

A record 28.7 million foreign tourists visited Japan last year. The figure is up nearly 20 percent from a year ago.

Immigration authorities hope that the gates will help reduce the waiting time for visitors.




#2 PeterRS



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Posted 09 June 2018 - 10:48 AM

Whenever I have been to Japan, the Immigration queues for non Japanese on entry have usually been huge. 45-60 minutes was usual a few years ago even tho the Japanese line officials often had no queues at all. Never once did I see anyone from the foreigner line be moved to keep those on the Japanese lines occupied.


I wonder how successful facial will be? Some passports last ten years and the photos in them could be a year or so older than that. Over 11 years, a man could have gone bald, men and women have to start wearing spectacles etc.. Quite a number of facial features could have changed as people age. It seems many airports are adopting different systems London has iris recognition. Last time I entered, I was stopped. It didn't recognise my eyes! Taipei uses fingerprints on entry and exit but exit is now automatic with a quick passport scan and fingerprints. No departure cards. Takes 10 seconds or less. Not sure if there is worldwide airport  security body. If there is I cant understand why it does not get international airports to standardise their procedures.

#3 abang1961



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Posted 09 June 2018 - 11:26 AM

I thought that the latest biometric passport suffices but no, you have that fingerprint and now, face recognition.



Now that cosmetic enhancement is so popular, what happened if I go for some procedure and do look different from that photo in the passport? No that I have done anything yet, but should this be an area to explore?  


Just for your information: Self-depreciating time ..

I do look terrible after many hours of flight and with reading glasses, ...without proper grooming and wearing my pajamas-looking clothes, I don't look remotely as good as that suave, handsome man in the photo at all...I look more like a depraved criminal!







#4 z909



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Posted 09 June 2018 - 08:50 PM

The last time I went to Japan, there was no queue at all, but that was the exception.


Overall, I would say it's good to see automatic immigration machines being introduced.  These SHOULD be more reliable and more secure than humans, who will just get bored.    Also, it should be possible to operate at max capacity continuously.


In practice, of course reliability is patchy.   When they work, they are great.   Upon arrival in a European country recently, a long row of the machines processed four consecutive busloads of passengers & I had no queue at all.  

Upon departure from a different airport, there were 4 machines, one had a red cross for out of order.   2 were supposedly working, but would not read anyone's passport & the remaining machine worked.


This kind of technology needs to be made reliable so the machines are working at least 99% of the time and when they do fail, it needs to be one machine at a time, not systematic failures.  It really should not be difficult, as he only moving part id the gate.


As for Japan, who will be eligible to use the machines ?     In Europe, it's usually EU & EEA citizens, which covers a large percentage od passengers.   As far as I know, Japan is not a member of any cozy club like the EU, so will it just be holders of Japanese passports plus any gaijin with a multiple re-entry permit ?

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