Brazil is testing the world’s only facial recognition shuttle service.

Travel World

In the shuttle service between Rio de Janeiro (Santos Dumont) and So Paulo, Congonhas Airport introduces the Embarque + Seguro 100 percent Digital Boarding System, which uses simultaneous biometrics of passengers. IDEMIA’s technology collects face biometrics in a fraction of a second, enabling even greater agility to the boarding process while eliminating lines and delays.

The Project Embarque + Seguro 100 percent Digital Boarding System, which uses face recognition technology developed by the Brazilian government, will arrive at Congonhas Airport on Tuesday (June 15). (SP). Passengers on the air shuttle service between the capitals of So Paulo and Rio de Janeiro will take part in the world’s first simultaneous testing of this end-to-end technology without the need to produce either a boarding permit or an identity certificate. The Ministry of Infrastructure Project, developed in collaboration with Serpro and the Ministry of Economy’s Special Secretariat of Debureaucratization, Management, and Digital Government, has already been tested at the airports of Florianópolis (SC), Salvador (BA), Santos Dumont (RJ), and Belo Horizonte (Confins).

After the pilot project is approved, the Federal Government will take steps to successfully integrate the technology in major Brazilian airports. The system promises to make airport boarding more efficient, agile, and secure. “It is the first time that tests are being conducted concurrently in two of our airports, establishing, in an unprecedented fashion, a 100 percent biometric air shuttle between RJ / SP, which has the world’s fifth-largest movement,” says Marcelo Sampaio, executive secretary of MInfra.

Throughout the day, Azul Linhas Aéreas customers flying between Congonhas and Santos Dumont airports will be encouraged to use biometric face recognition technology to get entry to both the boarding area and the aircraft at both terminals. “Embarque + Seguro combines biometric validation and data analysis to provide accurate, agile, and secure identification of passengers, allowing them to travel in more comfort and tranquillity. The solution conforms with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and is based on personal data processing security against abuse or unauthorized use “Serpro’s president, Gileno Barreto, underlines this point.

“The air shuttle’s Embarque + Seguro integrates two key things that speed the boarding processes, which are safety and ease for the passenger and the whole civil aviation system,” says Brigadier Paes de Barros, president of Infraero.

“Facial recognition is a worldwide trend, and the Project Embarque + Seguro, jointly carried out by Minfra and Serpro, indicates that Brazil is on the correct route to airport digitization,” says Márcio Lambert, Director of Public Security & Identity (PSI) of IDEMIA in Brazil. IDEMIA’s technology is used in some of the world’s most modern airports, including Changi in Singapore, and provides a high level of security for passengers, airlines, and airport operators, as its algorithm is extremely accurate, achieving an extremely high authenticity rate in the identification of individuals.

“The latest Global Passengers Research conducted by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) says that 70% of interviewees are willing to share their biometry for identification purposes during the boarding process. Our global expertise contributes to meeting society’s need to fly again. This innovative project developed by the Federal Government allows travelers to enjoy a quieter, safer and more comfortable boarding experience and puts Brazil at the forefront of the digital transformation movement. IDEMIA as a global leader in augmented identity has the mission to facilitate the flow of passengers by creating the possibility to interact and travel in a more connected way. To participate in the first air shuttle with an end-to-end fully digitized boarding system, in both airports, is an important milestone in our history,” explains Rodrigo Costa, PSI business development director at IDEMIA LATAM.

IDEMIA’s MFACE technology records face biometrics in seconds, making the boarding procedure even faster and eliminating lines and delays. The solution combines the convenience and security of data validation while also protecting passengers’ privacy in accordance with the GDPR. It also provides a more sanitary procedure by removing document and paper handling, reducing the danger of infection.

“The control of IDEMIA’s biometric system follows high-quality, reliability and safety standards and offers more agility and comfort to passengers, turning the airport operational process more intelligent, the airline passenger identification more accurate, and generates the security required by the government,” adds Márcio Lambert.

How it operates

Passengers of Azul Linhas Aéreas are encouraged to join in the initiative when they check in at the airport. If the passenger accepts, a message is sent to the mobile phone provided in the application, seeking permission to acquire the passenger’s data, which includes the passenger’s social security number and a picture. Following the citizen’s agreement, the airline attendant performs biometric validation of the citizen using a Serpro-developed application, comparing the data and pictures obtained on the spot with government databases.


In addition to operational expenses, metrics including wait time reduction, access to the departure hall, and aircraft are measured in the pilot project. Airport security is likely to improve as a result of the testing, since face recognition enables for reliable passenger identification.

“We are moving towards a fully secure biometric boarding at every airport in the country. In addition to the process being safe from the sanitary point of view, by eliminating the handling of papers during the pandemic, it guarantees the total protection of users’ data, because the Embarque + Seguro 100% Digital Boarding System meets all the precepts of the LGPD”, says Marcelo Sampaio.

Serpro is MInfra’s key partner in the country’s transportation digital agenda, but Embarque + Seguro has also enlisted the help of airlines and airports where the tests were conducted, allowing the project to develop at each level. The air shuttle pilot test is being carried out with the help of Infraero and Azul Linhas Aéreas, while Digicon, IDEMIA, and Azul/Pacer businesses created the facial identification station technology.


IDEMIA, the global leader in Augmented Identity, creates a secure environment that allows residents and customers to carry out their everyday essential activities (such as pay, connect, and travel) in both the physical and digital worlds.

In today’s society, protecting our identity has become mission important. We reinvent the way we think, produce, use, and protect one of our most valuable assets – our identity – whether for individuals or for objects, whenever and wherever security matters, by standing for Augmented Identity, an identity that ensures privacy and trust and guarantees secure, authenticated, and verifiable transactions.

Congonhas facial recognition shuttle IDEMIA

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