The government of Canada will collaborate with the World Economic Forum and partners to test emerging digital technologies and their application to air travel.
Following the launch of a Known Traveller Digital Identity prototype, the government of Canada will design a proof of concept pilot project between two countries, demonstrating the potential of emerging biometrics and distributed ledger technologies and their impact on facilitating secure and seamless air travel.
Canada will work the Netherlands to explore opportunities for demonstrating the potential of digital identity systems to engender trust and co-operation between international partners.
The launch of the Known Traveller Digital Identity prototype is the first step in an ambitious roadmap for public and private sector leaders to start small and scale fast to radically transform the border-crossing experience for the majority of legitimate travellers.
By 2030, international air arrivals are expected to reach 1,8-billion passengers, a 50% increase from the 1,2-billion arrivals recorded in 2016.
According to a new report by the World Economic Forum, in collaboration with Accenture, to accommodate this growth the public and private sectors will need to address infrastructure, human resource, and procedural constraints, while at the same time maintaining national and international security standards. This requires an integrated and trusted approach between governments and the private sector underpinned by emerging technologies and innovations.
“Innovation is key to enhancing global competitiveness, mobility and productivity. Leveraging new technological advancements can support risk-based approaches to public safety and security, making air travel more efficient while improving the travel experience” says Canada’s Minister of Transport Marc Garneau.
The Known Traveller concept is founded on the principle that an individual traveller has control over the use of their own identity and its components. Due to this decentralization of control over the components of their identity, a traveller can push proof of their identity information — secured by distributed ledger technology and cryptography — to governmental and private-sector entities throughout their journey.
“With travellers providing access to verified personal biometric, biographic and historical travel data at their discretion, they can assist authorities to undertake risk assessments and pre-screening in advance: essentially verifying their identities and providing secure and seamless movement throughout their journey using biometric recognition technology,” says John Moavenzadeh, head of mobility system initiative at the World Economic Forum.
“Not only does this provide for greater personalisation and passenger-centricity in the design of services, but the passenger becomes a central actor in ensuring public safety.”
“The use of distributed ledger technology can foster an unprecedented level of trust between governments, businesses and travel providers that becomes stronger over time as more interactions take place across the travel ecosystem,” says Liselotte de Maar, MD of Accenture’s travel practice.
“The KTDI concept removes friction from travelling while ensuring greater security at each touchpoint, from hotel check-in to border control. By enabling travellers to share their validated identity information through the KTDI, it allows receiving organizations the advantage of knowing in advance with whom they will interact.”