Feeds

US, Australia may share SmartGates

Information sharing experience leads to possible e-passport access for both nations

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

Years of experience sharing intelligence data about airline passengers has given the USAand Australia confidence to put the data to work as a queue-buster, after the nations announced they would explore expedited access to immigration services in their respective airports.

The potential new arrangements emerged in a speech by the US Secretary of Homeland Security, Janet Napolitano, in Canberra last week.

In her speech, Napolitano said through “ .. a data-sharing pilot that began in 2006 between Australia, the U.S. and three other countries, we have also enabled better decision-making about who can enter our countries and receive immigration benefits, in the process thwarting “asylum shoppers” and other bad actors seeking to fraudulently obtain refuge in our countries.” She also praised the Passenger Name Record (PNR) data program as having helped to prevent thousands of “individuals with potential ties to terrorism” from entering the US.

The PNR program makes it compulsory for visitors to the USA to notify the nation 72 hours before they board a craft to visit its shores. Napolitano's speech emphasised the care the USA applies to the resulting mountain of data. She went on to state that the data hygiene practices her department have adopted are so benign and open that the travelling public can feel very confident about their personal security even when, as happens with the USA's Global Entry program, travellers offer up considerable amounts of personal data to gain access to an expedited and automated immigration process. That process is welcomed by frequent visitors to the USA, given the the hour-plus queues that are now common at many US airports mean Australians landing on the West Coast now face at least three hour transfer times for onward flights. Before 9/11 two hour transfers were common.

Napolitano went on to say that the US is now so confident in its “give us more data and we'll be nicer to you” regime that “One of the agreements I will sign during my visit here allows us to explore participation by our citizens in each other's expedited traveler programs so that as we take steps to protect our shared transportation networks, we will continue to facilitate travel between our countries, for Americans and Australians alike.”

Australia's expedited traveller scheme sees incoming flyers offered the chance to use a “Smart Gate” automated passport reader, which uses only chipped passports and conducts face recognition. Global Entry offers similar facilities and the exploration will likely aim at ensuring interoperability between the two systems.

Co-incidentally, Australia's government today announced 20 more SmartGates will be installed over the next two years, starting at Sydney and Melbourne airports. ®

Protecting against web application threats using SSL

More from The Register

next story
Hey, Scots. Microsoft's Bing thinks you'll vote NO to independence
World's top Google-finding website calls it for the UK
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
Apple CEO Tim Cook: TV is TERRIBLE and stuck in the 1970s
The iKing thinks telly is far too fiddly and ugly – basically, iTunes
Israeli spies rebel over mass-snooping on innocent Palestinians
'Disciplinary treatment will be sharp and clear' vow spy-chiefs
Huawei ditches new Windows Phone mobe plans, blames poor sales
Giganto mobe firm slams door shut on Microsoft. OH DEAR
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
OECD lashes out at tax avoiding globocorps' location-flipping antics
You hear that, Amazon, Google, Microsoft et al?
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.