New credential authentication technology implemented at Tampa Airport

The TSA at Tampa International Airport have introduced nine CAT units in order to provide passengers with a touchless journey through the airport.

New credential authentication technology implemented at Tampa Airport

Credit: Tampa International Airport

In an age where touchless is preferred for a number of reasons, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) at Tampa International Airport (TPA) has implemented a new credential authentication technology to improve checkpoint screening capabilities, as well as the passenger experience.

TSA’s Federal Security Director for Tampa International Airport, Kirk Skinner, said: “This state-of-the-art technology improves upon TSA’s real-time detection of fraudulent identification documents, such as driver’s licenses and passports, at checkpoints and increases efficiency by automatically verifying passenger identification.”

The TSA at Tampa Airport has a total of nine credential authentication technology (CAT) units, at least one at each airside, in operation. In addition to enhancing detection capabilities for identifying fraudulent IDs, the credential system is able to confirm a passenger’s flight status through a secured connection.

John Tiliacos, Executive Vice President of Operations and Customer Service at TPA, said: “This new technology will further enhance the guest experience while ensuring the safety of all. We are grateful for our partners at TSA and the exceptional job they do in keeping all of our passengers, guests and employees safe on a daily basis.”

At TPA, travellers insert their ID in the CAT unit for it to be scanned, and the unit will then inform the officer whether the ID is valid. Additionally, in most cases, travellers who approach the TSA travel document checking podium do not have to show their boarding pass as the CAT unit verifies that the traveller is ticketed to travel out of the airport for a flight that day.

TSA CAT unit

Credit: Tampa International Airport

However, a boarding pass may be requested for travellers under the age of 18 and/or those with ID issues. Even with TSA’s use of the CAT units, travellers are still required to check-in with their airline in advance and bring their boarding pass to their gate agent to show the airline representative before boarding their flight.

CAT units authenticate several thousand types of IDs, including passports, military common access cards, retired military ID cards, Department of Homeland Security Trusted Traveler ID cards, uniformed services ID cards, permanent resident cards, U.S. visas and driver’s licenses and photo IDs issued by state motor vehicle departments.