DHS moves to prevent watch-list mix-ups

April 28, 2008 at 9:05 PM
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BALTIMORE, April 28 (UPI) -- The U.S. Homeland Security Department announced the launch of the Checkpoint Evolution prototype that it says will clear up watch-list misidentifications.

The new system, which began operation Monday at the Baltimore-Washington International Airport, is a new database that will store a person's date of birth information that officials say adds a level of detail to a passenger's information that will alleviate hassles people face with a name similar to someone on a watch list, the DHS reported.

Officials say passengers who are confronted with misidentification problems when flying will now be able to voluntarily provide their date of birth information and avoid being inconvenienced.

"Hassles due to misidentification and the resulting necessity to stand in line to check in at the ticket counter is consistently among the deepest -- and most valid -- complaints of the traveling public," Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff said in a statement.

"Thousands of passengers are inconvenienced each day, and this change should provide a way to eliminate the vast majority of these situations."

The DHS also announced Monday that following REAL ID benchmarks, federal or state-issued photo identifications with a person's name, date of birth, gender, expiration date and tamper-resistant features will begin being accepted at security checkpoints at the end of May.

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