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Best Practice Operational Guidelines for Automated Border Control (ABC) Systems

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Last modified: 
Wed, 31/10/2012 - 15:01

The present document constitutes a compendium of best practice guidelines on the design, deployment and operation of automated border control systems with a focus on their operational dimension. Automated Border Control (ABC) is defined as the use of automated or semi-automated systems which can verify the identity of travellers at border crossing points (BCPs), without the need for human intervention. In general, an ABC system consists of one or two physical barriers (e-Gates), document readers, a monitor displaying instructions, a biometric capture device, and system management hardware and software. The term Best Practice Guidelines (BPG), on the other hand, refers to knowledge, typically based on experience, which can be shared in order to achieve improved results towards specific objectives. These BPG have been drafted by the Frontex Working Group (WG) on ABC in an effort to promote harmonisation of practice, similar traveller experience, and consistent security levels at the different BCPs where ABC systems have been deployed. The intended audience are decision makers, project managers and practitioners involved in the design, implementation and operation of ABC systems in the EU Member States (MSs). While these ABC Best Practical Operational Guidelines (BPOG) have been conceived as a standalone resource, ideally they should be read in combination with the Frontex “Best Practice Technical Guidelines for ABC Systems”. Both documents focus on ABC systems based on the use of an electronic travel document (generally an ICAO compliant e-Passport) which can be used by EU citizens without the need of pre-enrolment. Registered Traveller Programmes (RTPs) are outside its scope.The biometric markers covered include both facial recognition and fingerprints. The BPOG are structured in two main areas. The first proposes guidelines and recommendations on the operational dimension of ABC, such as its operational and functional requirements, the implementation process, the system possible topologies and its integration in the host environment, the roles and tasks of personnel, and the handling of exceptions. The second addresses issues related to the traveller experience, including methods for awareness-raising among travellers, to deliver usage instructions and to achieve a high quality and user friendly service.

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