EDS and Unisys win TSA Registered Traveler contracts

Unisys Corp. and EDS Corp. today won contracts to implement the Transportation Security Administration's Registered Traveler program, retired Rear Adm. David Stone announced. Stone is acting administrator of TSA.

Unisys, Blue Bell, Pa., was selected for the Houston, Minneapolis and Los Angeles airports, and EDS, Plano, Texas, EDS was picked for the Boston and Washington airports. The Unisys contract is initially worth $2.5 million, and the EDS contract is initially worth $1.3 million. Both contracts are for 180 days, according to TSA.

The contracts are for program management, biometrics, tactical operations and systems integration.

The Registered Traveler program is designed to speed through airport security checks those travelers who do not pose a security risk. According to TSA, airlines solicit participation in the program by frequent flyers, those who travel at least once a week in selected markets.

Each volunteer will provide TSA with information, including name, address, phone number and date of birth, along with biometric identification, including fingerprint and iris scan. TSA will then do a security assessment of each volunteer that will include analysis of data from law enforcement and intelligence sources and a check for outstanding criminal warrants.

Approved volunteers will be considered for enrollment in the pilot program. Passengers will not be charged an enrollment fee during the pilot phase, according to TSA.

When the program is operational at their home airports, volunteers will proceed to a Registered Traveler lane to provide their biometrics (either a fingerprint or iris scan) at the checkpoint. This will confirm their valid registrations and let them proceed to primary screening. Secondary screening will be largely eliminated, according to TSA.

"We believe that this pilot program will provide frequent travelers with the means to expedite the screening experience without compromising on security," Stone said.

TSA will launch the program at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport with Northwest Airlines later this month. Checkpoint operations are scheduled to begin in early July.

In late July, TSA will implement the program at Los Angeles International Airport in coordination with United Airlines. In early August, the program will begin at George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston in coordination with Continental Airlines. By the end of August, TSA will launch the program at Boston's Logan International Airport and at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, in coordination with American Airlines.

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