Facial mismatch’: U.S. Customs stops unvaccinated woman at Canadian border with sister’s passport
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Face recognition technology spotted a woman crossing the Canadian border into the U.S. with her sister’s American passport and vaccination.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) said a border agent processing passengers on a bus was using Simplified Arrival facial scanning technology on Nov. 26 when it found the ‘facial mismatch,’ according to the release.
The woman, whose country of origin was not specified, was crossing at the Pacific Highway Port of Entry in Blaine, Washington.
“Upon further investigation, the woman admitted to using her sister’s U.S. passport and COVID-19 vaccination card because she had not been vaccinated,” the release said.
According to U.S. Customs, Simplified Arrival automates document checks with 98 per cent accuracy and lets foreign nationals who have already been to the U.S. skip fingerprint scanning.
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Simplified Arrival is only used when entering the U.S. through clearances where travelers are already required to provide travel documents and identification, adds the release. CBP takes measures Swiss driver's license online to reduce the number of personal identifying information used in the process, it continues.
Photos taken of U.S. citizens are deleted within 12 hours while photos of foreign nationals will be stored in a secure Homeland Security system, CBP says.
“U.S. travelers and foreign nationals who are not required to provide biometrics and wish to opt out of the new biometric process may notify a CBP officer as they approach the primary inspection point,” the release adds. “These travelers British Passport online will be required to present a valid travel document for inspection by a Greece driver's license CBP officer and will be processed consistent with long established processes for admission into the United States.”
Since September 2018, U.S. Customs says it has employed facial biometrics to prevent more than 1,100 impostors from entering the states with genuine travel documents that were issued to other people and has processed up to 113 million travelers through face biometrics.
Last month , in a Senate meeting with Homeland Security, Diane Sabatino, the deputy executive assistant commissioner with the CBP Office of Field Operations, said facial recognition technology caught about 950 imposters at land, air and seaports of entry. Close to 600 of those were caught at the southern border with Mexico, one of the busiest ports of entry in the world.
Sabatino estimated that about 500 imposters last year were approved for prosecution.
Earlier this year, U.S. Customs said it caught a Canadian woman trying to use her sister’s passport to enter us passport generator the U.S. at a Toronto airport and turned her over to Canadian authorities.
It also turned away an asylum seeker who was previously deported by the U.S. from an airport in Vancouver.