Canada to Use Iris Scans for Customs IDs

Come this fall, Canadian citizens will be able to pass through customs in the blink of an eye. Literally.

Canada’s eight largest airports plan to install a revamped customs processing system that will use iris scan biometrics to check people arriving on international flights.

The system is being developed by Unisys Corp. in Blue Bell, Pa., and is based on iris scanning technology from Iridian Technologies Inc. in Marlton, N.J. According to Iridian, this is the largest rollout to date of the technology.

“Air travel is increasing, and customs checks are a process that involves a lot of customs inspectors,” said Sid Valo, Vice-President of Business and Strategic Development at the Greater Toronto Airports Authority. “The choice is: Either you keep adding more people or you come up with a secure automated system to do the job.”