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Interview with Rod Heitmeyer, ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organization)

Interview with Rod Heitmeyer, ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organization)

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Published by findbiometrics
Standardization is essential to the global interoperability of MRTDs. It allows all countries passports and other travel documents to be examined and their integrity established by both visual examination and machine reading, including the checking of biometrics with the new eMRTDs. It greatly facilitates checking the identity and nationality of the person presenting the document, improves the quality of facilitation by speeding up inspection, and enhances the level of enforcement and security. The high level of technology incorporated in the MRTD standards has steadily improved the level of security offered. This is particularly evident in the new biometric ePassport.
Standardization is essential to the global interoperability of MRTDs. It allows all countries passports and other travel documents to be examined and their integrity established by both visual examination and machine reading, including the checking of biometrics with the new eMRTDs. It greatly facilitates checking the identity and nationality of the person presenting the document, improves the quality of facilitation by speeding up inspection, and enhances the level of enforcement and security. The high level of technology incorporated in the MRTD standards has steadily improved the level of security offered. This is particularly evident in the new biometric ePassport.

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Published by: findbiometrics on Dec 22, 2009
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12/21/2009

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Interview with Rod Heitmeyer, ICAO(International Civil Aviation Organization)
Aug-30-08
FB
 Can you please provide our readers with a brief background ofthe ICAO?
Rod Heitmeyer
 ICAO was established in 1944 with the signing of the International
Convention on International Civil Aviation, ICAO’s charter, known
as the Chicago Convention. ICAO is the UN specialized agencyfor International Civil Aviation. It has 190 Member States and itsheadquarters are in Montreal. It has Regional Offices in MexicoCity, Lima, Paris, Dakar, Nairobi, Cairo and Bangkok.
ICAO’s man
date is to ensure the safe and orderly growth of international civil aviationthroughout the world. ICAO has established a solid worldwide regulatory structure, whichprimarily consists of the Standards and Recommended practices (SARPS) in the 18 Annexes tothe Convention which cover all technical and operational aspects of air transport. These arereviewed and updated regularly in response to technological advances in all areas.The implementation of these Standards and Recommended Practices is the individual andcollective responsibility of the Member States. This has resulted in a high level ofstandardization and harmonization throughout the global air transport system.Included in the 18 ICAO Annexes are Annex 9 on Facilitation which includes MRTDs and Annex17 on Security.
FB
 
MRTDs are developed with the assistance of ICAO’s Technical Advisory Group on Machine
Readable Travel Documents (TAG-MRTD) with technical and engineering input from ISOWorking Group 3 (ISO/IEC JTC/SC17/WG3). Can you please tell us more about this?
Rod Heitmeyer
 The TAG-MRTD is responsible for the development and adoption of standard MRTDspecifications in ICAO Doc 9303 for approval by the Air Transport Committee of the ICAOCouncil. It is also responsible for Supplements to Doc 9303, guidance material and TechnicalReports to inform States and the industry of present and future developments.The TAG-
MRTD’s New Technologies Working Group (NTWG) is responsible for the
development of standards using advanced technologies in travel documents and relatedsystems to facilitate international travel while maintaining appropriate levels of security. The
 
extensive work of the NTWG for the TAG-MRTD is carried out with the active participation ofISO WG3 and its five task forces.ICAO and ISO work together on MRTDs through a special mechanism of cooperationestablished by the two organizations in 1989 which provides for the endorsement of Doc.9303specifications as ISO Standards on a fast track basis through ISO WG3 which reports toISO/IEC JT1/SC17. ISO WG3 participates in the work of the TAG-MRTD and NTWG.The ICAO team of dedicated experts has produced amazing productive results in continuouslyadvancing MRTDs and related systems, contributing to improved security and facilitation.
FB
 What are some of the major benefits in standardizing travel document formats?
Rod Heitmeyer
 Standardization is essential to the global interoperability of MRTDs. It allows all countriespassports and other travel documents to be examined and their integrity established by bothvisual examination and machine reading, including the checking of biometrics with the neweMRTDs. It greatly facilitates checking the identity and nationality of the person presenting thedocument, improves the quality of facilitation by speeding up inspection, and enhances the levelof enforcement and security. The high level of technology incorporated in the MRTD standardshas steadily improved the level of security offered. This is particularly evident in the newbiometric ePassport. 
FB
 What are some examples of the standardization in MRTDs?
Rod Heitmeyer
 The standardization includes standard dimensions, data pages with visual (eye readable) andmachine readable zones, presentation and sequencing of data elements, name truncation, mainsecurity features, machine readability in MRTDs, and eMRTDs which include the standardglobally interoperable face biometric and secondary biometrics (fingerprint and iris), and chipreading and verification procedures including PKD.
FB
 ICAO will hold its Fourth Symposium on ICAO MRTDs, Biometrics and Security on October 6-82008 in Montreal, with an exhibition highlighting important products and services related toMRTDs, biometric identification and border inspection systems. Can you tell us about some of
this year’s highlights?
 

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