MORRISVILLE, N.C. — Raleigh-Durham International Airport (RDU) is launching a new identity verification system, CLEAR.
RDU will be installing CLEAR lanes where travelers can verify their identity with a scan of their retina or fingerprints. This technology replaces the need for people to show a driver’s license or other identification.
CLEAR Executive Vice President of Operations Kasra Moshkani said RDU is the 50th airport to use the technology.
“As a CLEAR member, as a traveler, you use one of our dedicated lanes rather than pulling out your ID … out [of] your wallet,” Moshkani said. “You actually use your eyes and your fingers to prove your identity and show that you are you.”
This is not to be mistaken for TSA PreCheck, though, since people who use CLEAR are still required to go through the full security screening. However, members will be escorted from the CLEAR kiosk straight to security, avoiding the lines leading up to the security checkpoint.
“RDU is proud to partner with CLEAR to provide travelers another option to expedite the security screening process,” said Michael Landguth, president and CEO of the Raleigh-Durham Airport Authority. “RDU’s commitment to leveraging technology to provide our guests with a world-class experience makes CLEAR an excellent fit.”
Crystal Feldman – the vice president of communications, government and community affairs for the Raleigh-Durham Airport Authority – said guests asked when airport leadership would bring CLEAR to RDU.
“The development we’re announcing [Wednesday] will speed up and streamline the security checkpoint security process,” Feldman said.
Moshkani also addressed security concerns about CLEAR.
“Transparency and security are really at the center of what CLEAR does,” Moshkani said. “With CLEAR, everything is opt in. So, as a member, you know exactly what information is being collected, you know how it’s being used and you know it’s never going to be sold.”
Moshkani said members also have the ability to delete their data, data privacy and date protection.
A CLEAR Plus membership costs $189 annually. Up to three family members can be added to an account for $60 each. Family members younger than 18 years old can be added to an account for free.
RDU passenger Andrew Williams signed up for CLEAR. He said he flies about once a month. On Wednesday, he returned home from a trip to Birmingham.
“I flew out on Monday and I saw the machines, and it had my attention because I have a credit card that gives me a credit for CLEAR, and I thought, ‘I don’t really have a use for it until it’s at RDU,’ which surprised [me], and [I’m] grateful to see that it is here,” Williams said.
Williams said he doesn’t have security concerns.
“I’ve heard lots of things about Madison Square Garden recently using facial recognition technology without people’s permission, so I think that those devices and systems are out there already,” Williams said. “And, if I’m going to give it over to a system and have it have my data, at least I know that it’s accurate.”
Williams also uses TSA PreCheck.
“I’ve noticed the lines growing over time, so it’s nice to have this,” Williams said.
CLEAR’s launch at RDU is expected to create 44 jobs and generate approximately $2.6 million in local economic activity every year.