ALEXANDRIA, Va., March 19 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- American Association of Airport Executives President Chip Barclay today applauded the expansion of the Registered Traveler (RT) program with the opening of RT lanes at Washington-Dulles International Airport and Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport.
"The expansion of the Registered Traveler program to key airports in the nation's capital will further highlight the program's value in enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of screening operations and in serving the needs of the traveling public," Barclay said. "Airport executives look forward to continuing our work with TSA and service providers to make the program even more effective as it grows to additional airports across the country."
AAAE's ties to the RT program are extensive. Barclay was part of a select group of industry officials invited by then-DOT Secretary Norm Mineta to participate in the Secretary's Rapid Response Team on Airport Security created following the events of Sept. 11, 2001 . Creating an RT program was one of the team's recommendations, and the concept was later endorsed by the 9/11 Commission.
AAAE has long been active in advocating for the program on behalf of its members. Through the Registered Traveler Interoperability Consortium, the association was instrumental in bringing airport executives and numerous other private sector interests, including the RT vendor and biometrics technology communities, together to work collaboratively with the TSA on developing technical specifications and business rules under which the program now operates.
Additionally, AAAE, through its Transportation Security Clearinghouse (TSC, http://www.tsc-csc.com) and in partnership with the Security Biometric Clearing Network (SBCN, http://www.sbcn.com), plays a key role with the RT program through operation of the world's most advanced interoperable identity management system of travelers' biometric data -- the Central Information Management System (CIMS). The CIMS ensures interoperability, security and efficiency in the RT program and is responsible for several key functions, such as processing all records, interfacing with the TSA for background checks, ensuring a chain of trust from vetted enrollments and issued credentials, and sending alerts to all service providers regarding revoked credentials.
"AAAE and the TSC play a critical role in ensuring the RT program operates in accordance with the highest federal standards of security and in a manner that provides airport operators and consumers with critical choices in the marketplace," Barclay said. "The TSC Central Information Management System ensures that multiple RT cards work in multiple airport locations and that those cards work each and every time. The continued success of the program depends on that kind of consistency, and CIMS provides it seamlessly. We're proud of the fact that we've been able to provide that functionality at a fraction of the cost of similar systems operating for other programs."
The accuracy of the CIMS is critical to the efficiency and security of the program. By binding a registered traveler's identity to a biometrically verifiable and encrypted smart card, airports and TSA can be sure, every time, that the appropriate individual is cleared and receiving the benefits of the program. Thanks to CIMS, the RT program has never permitted someone to go through an RT checkpoint that has not been vetted and approved by the TSA background screening system and verified as being currently eligible to receive RT benefits.
ABOUT AAAE: Founded in 1928, AAAE (http://www.aaae.org) is the world's largest professional organization representing the men and women who work at public-use commercial and general aviation airports. AAAE's 5,000-plus members represent some 850 airports and hundreds of companies and organizations that support the airport industry. Headquartered in Alexandria, Va., AAAE serves its membership through results-oriented representation in Washington, D.C. and offers a wide range industry services and professional development opportunities including training, conferences, and a highly respected accreditation program.