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Andrea Romano
October 19, 2018

Shanghai’s Hongqiao Airport is speeding up the entire check-in process with a simple scan of your face.

According to TIME, passengers who hold a Chinese identity card can now check-in using an automated facial recognition system. There are currently eight self-serve kiosks flight for passengers to use, and plans to automate the entire process from checking to boarding, The Independent reported.

Facial recognition technology has been slowly becoming more and more popular around the world. British Airways rolled out the system for boarding flights in December 2017, and in June 2017, JetBlue collaborated with the US Customs and Border Protection to test a paperless and device-less self-boarding technology, reported The Independent. Chinese airline Spring Airlines was the first company to begin using the fully automated system at Shanghai Hongqiao Airport.

Zhang Zheng, general manager of the ground services department for Spring Airlines, told TIME that this is the first time there has been a fully automated, self-service check-in in China. Spring Airlines also announced that out of 5,017 people who took flights on the airline since the self-service kiosks were unveiled, 87% responded positively to them. The new system cuts the check in process to less than a minute and a half, reported TIME, which is something all travelers can celebrate.

But not everyone is happy about the changes. As with most new innovations in technology, concerns have been raised regarding privacy and identity. Maya Wang, senior China researcher for Human Rights Watch, told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) that the organization is “concerned about the increasing integration and use of facial-recognition technologies throughout the country because it provides more and more data points for the authorities to track people.”

With governments around the world, struggling to keep up with the ever-changing technology, facial recognition systems may become a bigger issue for passengers who want to protect their privacy.

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