Borders can be quite stressful, especially if you are planning to travel to Europe as a non-European. Crossing the border will get more complicated over the next year when a new regulation, EES or European Entry/Exit System comes into fruition at the end of 2023.
In December 2017, the European Commission adopted the proposal for an EES as part of a revised Smart Borders Package. According to the European Commission, existing border management systems will be aimed at improving the management of external borders of the Schengen Member States, as well as facilitating border crossings for pre-vetted frequent non-EU travelers.
In the following blog, we explore the impact of EES and how EU borders will adopt a fully biometric border control. We start by taking a closer look at EES and what it means for travelers.
Entry/Exit System (EES) – Background
EES is a new regulation which asks EU borders to become even more secured via biometric border control. It was previously scheduled to be adopted in 2022, and then May 2023, but has now been delayed to November 2023 . The regulation will serve to register entry and exit data of third-country nationals crossing the external borders of the Schengen Zone.
Regarding biometric border control, EES will deploy biometric enrolment to the border control process – aiming to intensify security and advance passenger processing. The EES system will register the traveler’s name, their travel document, biometric data (i.e., fingerprints and facial images) as well as the date and place of entry and exit. Because travelers will be registered digitally, EES will remove the need for physical stamps.
EES is considered an additional new feature of European travel to the ETIAS (European Travel Information and Authorisation System) scheme – obliging travelers from outside Europe to apply for a visa-waiver before they arrive at a country within the Schengen Zone .
Countries in the Schengen Zone
The European Schengen Zone is comprised of three different categories or groupings. The first of the three groups are EU and Schengen nationals. In the second group, many non-European countries do not require a visa to visit Europe, but there are restrictions on how long they can stay. And lastly, the third group consists of nationals of non-European countries that require visas before they visit Europe.
At Embross, our team recognizes the evolving need of traveler’s as well as their communication with both travel providers and governments. This understanding is demonstrated by Embross’ leading success in deploying accessibility compliant solutions and integrating capability into both hardware and software for broader usability. We continue to be at the forefront of self-service biometric technology, developing solutions for customs and immigration services.
Next, we take a closer look at ABC (automated border control) kiosks and how they are designed to meet the extensive security requirements and standards of the EES initiative.
Automated Border Control (ABC) Kiosks
A next generation passenger ABC kiosk, purposefully designed to meet the needs of the most demanding airport environments, can greatly benefit members of the Schengen Area. Given that the new EES initiative is designed to better record and control people entering its borders, the deployment of self-service ABC kiosks presents a fantastic opportunity to meet extensive security requirements while complying with data capture.
According to IATA’s 2022 Global Passenger Survey (GPS), the lowest level of satisfaction came from border control and immigration, which was rated at 64%. In spite of mandatory requirements to retrieve additional data at this stage, Embross’ solutions help deliver the needs of today while firmly pushing the boundaries into the next generation of passenger service.
Integration into existing entry/exit systems – V1 immigration kiosk
Integration is a key component when discussing business transformation. The ability to integrate with other ABC systems is a fundamental component of product development. At Embross, our VelocityOne (V1) immigration kiosk is easily integrated with existing Entry Exit systems, e-Gates (which we will discuss shortly), and pre-enrollment mobile applications. The VI immigration kiosk provides a complete biometric self-service solution for the fast and effective processing of travelers at land, air, and sea borders. A significant impact: the kiosks have a modular design – enabling a full array of compliant components including fingerprint scanners, document readers and a high-performance biometric capture module.
The kiosk’s design supports its function. Artificial Intelligence (AI) makes it possible to recognize a person within the camera’s field of view (FOV) and adjusts the camera positioning based on the traveler’s height. With the vertical embedded camera, passengers can be detected, recognized, and have their PNR (Passenger Name Record) data retrieved upon approach to the bag drop.
Until now, we have been talking about ABC systems but what about e-Gates? Let us turn our attention to these automated self-service systems helping to provide greater flexibility and processing passengers faster.
Electronic e-Gates – Security and Control
The main question people ask is, what exactly does the e-Gate do? In a nutshell, it provides the highest level of safety and security for airport passenger control. More specifically, it is designed to validate boarding passengers with the aid of biometrics – improving boarding time while reducing fraud (such as tailgating, crawling under or crawling over) with built-in infrared optical sensors and smart beam technology.
At Embross, our VelocityGate (V-Gate) is integrated with the Embross Platform and airport/airline systems to accurately collect data and immediately accept or reject boarding passengers, improving passenger processing. Furthermore, the V-Gate provides all data from the ABC process in real-time to a monitoring station which is managed by a border control officer, who also assists travelers in case of any issues throughout the process.
The future of border control will be adaptable and radically connected. It will rely on collaboration from all stakeholders. Biometrics and facial recognition will continue to play a key role in transforming the border control experience.
Embross is a trusted partner to governments for close to 30 years and our experience of border control processes is highlighted on both product and solution offerings. Our team ensures that airports, airlines, and travelers benefit from our extensive experience in this domain and unique position as an expert solutions provider.
At Embross, we design, install, and deploy a broad spectrum of biometric solutions to help you achieve these significant changes. If you would like to learn more, don’t hesitate to contact a member of our expert team: firstname.lastname@example.org
References: https://commonslibrary.parliament.uk/the-eu-entry-exit-system-and-eu-travel-authorisation-system/  https://www.forbes.com/sites/alexledsom/2022/10/28/europe-travel-youll-soon-need-to-scan-fingers-and-faces-us-travelers-included/?sh=3eea6e3e2546
Author: Omar Abbasi, Marketing Manager