Ports opt for biometrics

November 2013 Access Control & Identity Management, Transport (Industry)

Lumidigm has announced that Alfapass, the provider of the security smart-card system at the Ports of Antwerp and Zeebrugge in Belgium, is replacing the older biometric system at the ports’ registration stations with Lumidigm V-Series multispectral imaging fingerprint readers.

The Port of Antwerp is Europe’s second largest port, while Zeebrugge is the central port for Europe’s automotive industry and has the largest liquefied natural gas terminal complex in Europe. Alfapass is now in the process of enrolling 17 000 truck drivers and 10 000 longshoremen at the two ports on the new system.

A major access control function at the port facilities is the unique identification of individuals in a more efficient manner, especially for those who travel between multiple port facilities. The solution is a single ID card that covers all facilities rather than a different entrance card for each company at the port. Therefore, visitors to both Belgian ports carry a smart card from Alfapass which includes the visitor’s biometric template. When reading the card, each individual facility has the option of also verifying the fingerprint stored on the card. By checking and verifying the fingerprint, facility personnel can assure that the card is being presented by its rightful owner.

“We have been using biometrics since 2005 but we needed a better solution to provide increased security that is easier for port visitors to use,” explains Piet Hadermann, Alfapass operations manager.

All port visitors are now being enrolled – from longshoremen to ship’s chaplains – with the Lumidigm fingerprint readers. The biometric readers are placed and used at port registration offices and administrative kiosks located at the “gate in” for truck drivers and elsewhere an Alfapass card can be used. Alfapass enrols user cards with two fingerprints, assuring that if there is a problem with the primary finger, the user can simply sign in with the alternate finger. The kiosk or access control device can also ask for the second finger.

Using the Alfapass system, when a card is lost or stolen, or the person no longer works for the company, the card is automatically blocked at all participating facilities. Only cardholders that also pass the biometric check-in are able to enter.

For more information contact Phil Scarfo, Lumidigm, +1 505 730 4949, pscarfo@lumidigm.com





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