Heathrow T1 introduces biometric security scans - Heathrow Airport News

Airport news for Heathrow on 07/02/2008.

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A new security system was introduced at Heathrow Airport on Friday, using new technology which scans the eyes and fingerprints of passengers before allowing them to board their flights.

The new security measures are now in place in Terminal 1 of the airport, which has its own distinct domestic and international departure lounges.

A spokesperson from the British Airports Authority (BAA), who owns the airport explained that the security check is unique to Heathrow because of the arrangement with the domestic and international lounges. Only domestic passengers wishing to visit the large international lounge area before their flights need to undergo the additional screening. As well, those international passengers transferring to domestic flights are required to undergo the check.

The spokesperson went on to say that passengers are still required to have their boarding pass and photo identification on hand in addition to providing finger print information and iris scans. The spokesperson claimed that the biometric data provided by these scans would be destroyed within 24 hours.

Domestic passengers who do not visit the international lounge in Terminal 1 do not have to provide biometric data.

In addition to improving security measures, the spokesperson for BAA said that the security arrangement at Terminal 1 would provide valuable information about testing the technology, which may also be used when Terminal 5 opens in March.

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