Biometric screening expands to the car rental sector.
Hertz said Tuesday that it is working with Clear, the creator of biometric screening kiosks found at many airports, in an effort to shorten the time needed to pick up a rental car.
Clear hopes that this will lead more travelers to his platform, which has 3 million members in the United States
It is the newest place where consumers will find biometric technology that has migrated over the last 50 years from secure government facilities and banks to airports, stadiums and even smartphones that unlock with a fingerprint.
Hertz is the first car rental company to use the technology.
In a first for the rental car industry, Hertz works with Clear, the maker of biometric screening kiosks that can be found at many airports and stadiums. Hertz says the partnership will shorten the time needed to pick up a rental car
Thanks to improvements in cameras & other technologies, it has become cheaper to install scanners that can read fingerprints, faces and irises.
More than 100 airports worldwide use biometric readers from Clear, Vision-Box and other companies to scan passengers. Walt Disney World verifies the identity of visitors by scanning fingerprints.
And the progress is likely to continue. Microsoft is working with the National Bank of Australia on cash dispensers without money with which people can withdraw money using a face scan and a personal identification number.
Universities in London and Copenhagen have groceries on campus with which students can pay with their finger. Some laptops can now be unlocked with a fingerprint scan.
Hertz with Clear launched his biometrics scans at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport this week.
It will be rolled out next year to 40 other US Hertz locations, including John F. Kennedy Airport at New York, San Francisco International Airport and Los Angeles International Airport.
Hertz Gold Plus Rewards loyalty programs with access to Clear can bypass the counter, collect their car and go to the exit.
Clear pods equipped with cameras and touch screens can read their face or fingerprints.
If they match the Hertz reservation data, the gate is opened. Hertz has assigned at least one lane to Clear members at each location.
Above, a rental car driver demonstrates a new biometric scanning machine by placing his finger on the reader at the Hertz facility at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, in Atlanta.
Kathy Marinello, CEO and CEO of Hertz, expects Clear to be 1.5 minutes away from what is now a two-minute check-out process.
& # 39; In the world of travel, I think time is essential, & # 39; she said.
The service is free for members of the Gold Plus Rewards program, for which no costs apply.
Travelers can register for Clear at a Hertz location. To upgrade to the airport service, which promises to move members faster through safety lines, travelers must pay a monthly fee of $ 15.
Clear says it is the first time that members are identified on the basis of their faces instead of their iris or their fingerprints.
Clear CEO Caryn Seidman-Becker says that the cameras can do measurements and identify small differences in facial features.
Amil Jain, a professor at Michigan State University who investigates biometrics, says that screenings work in the face by comparing an original photo with a new one.
This can be difficult in a rental car lane, where the lighting can vary considerably and drivers can wear make-up or winter scarves that change their properties.
& # 39; If you do not handle biometrics properly, you can turn off the customer more, & # 39; he said. But well done biometric scanning can be more robust and secure than showing an employee whether a driver's face matches their license, he said.
Jain does not think that customers should especially worry about facial scans. He points out that millions of people have already shared photos of their faces on Facebook and other platforms.
But Justin Brookman, Consumer Protection and Technology Director for Consumer Reports, said consumers should think twice before they can share personal identification data.
& # 39; Once your biometric data has been leaked or compromised, you can really do nothing about it, he said.
& # 39; The more people have the potential, the greater the chance that things will go bad. & # 39;
Travelers can apply for Clear at a Hertz location. To upgrade to the airport service, which promises to move members faster through safety lines, travelers must pay a monthly fee of $ 15
Seidman-Becker said that Clear will not sell or share the collected data. She noted that the company has been certified by the US Department of Homeland Security.
But Jeramie Scott, the national security lawyer for the electronic privacy information center, said that biometric data sharing is still risky because there are no federal laws that regulate the collection, use and retention of biometric data.
& # 39; An individual can sign up for single use to find out that their data is being used in a different way, "he said.
Marinello said Clear approached Hertz about the collaboration and Hertz agreed to pay for the installation of the Clear pods.
HOW DOES SECRET RECOGNITION TECHNOLOGY WORK?
Face recognition software works by linking real-time images to an earlier photo of a person.
Each face has about 80 unique nodes across the eyes, nose, cheek and mouth that distinguish one person from the other.
A digital video camera measures the distance between different points on the human face, such as the width of the nose, the depth of the eye sockets, the distance between the eyes and the shape of the jaw line.
A smart surveillance system (photo) that can scan 2 billion faces within seconds, has been unveiled in China. The system connects to millions of CCTV cameras and uses artificial intelligence to select targets
This provides a unique numeric code that can then be linked to a matching code derived from a previous photo.
A face recognition system used by officials in China connects millions of CCTV cameras and uses artificial intelligence to choose targets.
Experts believe that facial recognition technology will soon adopt fingerprint technology as the most effective way to identify people.
Marinello would not say how much Hertz would invest, but said the company would pay for it through increased customers and recurring visits.
Hertz was eager to apply new technology and collaborate with other companies in an attempt to prove that there is still a future in rental cars, despite the pressure from companies that drive and companies that drive themselves.
It is a partner with Volvo in an autonomous driving incubator in, for example, Israel.
Clear also tries to increase its membership through partnerships after Seidman-Becker got it out of business in 2010.
Delta Air Lines bought a 5 percent stake in the company in 2016 and offers a discount on the Clear membership fees for its frequent flyers.