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Monday, February 22, 2021

Adopt facial recognition technology for RTS, Najib tells govt

 

Facial recognition technology was implemented at all Singapore immigration checkpoints last October. (AFP pic)

PETALING JAYA: Former prime minister Najib Razak says a faster customs and immigration clearance process will be the key to the success of the Johor Bahru-Singapore Rapid Transit System Link (RTS).

Najib said while the trains can deliver when it comes to travel times, customs and immigration clearance is the real issue.

“The government’s announcement last week that RTS passengers whose journey time was only five minutes but still need another 10-15 minutes for the customs clearance and immigration process, was quite disappointing,” he said in a Facebook post today.

He urged the government to integrate technology in the RTS system to speed up the border crossing process.

Najib cited Apple’s iPhone Face ID system, a facial recognition system that can achieve an accuracy rate of 99.99%, saying it translates to only one error for every million faces correctly recognised.

“Facial recognition technology is already here and more advanced. So, we actually do not have to wait until RTS starts operating to start this system because the technology is already developed.

“We just need to discuss with Singapore to implement the new system as soon as possible and use it at existing customs and immigration checkpoints,” he said.

He said that at the very least, both Malaysia and Singapore could start to register the facial ID of immigration cardholders within six months before the RTS starts operating to ensure its success.

“If you want to be faster, the card can also be used as an RTS ticket card so that the customs and immigration clearance process could be done while boarding the train,” he said.

It was reported last October that Singapore immigration had implemented iris and facial recognition technology for its citizens at all immigration checkpoints, namely Woodlands, Tuas and Changi Airport.

According to CNA, international travellers who provide their fingerprint, iris and face information at the manual counter on their arrival in Singapore can also use it for departure clearance and future travel. - FMT

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