IATA unveils plans for launching new travel pass

Published on : Friday, December 18, 2020

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) recently unveiled key design elements of the IATA Travel Pass. The pass is a mobile application that will help travellers to manage their travel easily and securely in line with any government requirements for COVID-19 testing or vaccine information. IATA emphasised that the critical design elements would put travellers in control of their personal information for top-level data security and data privacy.

The IATA Travel Pass stores encrypted data including verified test or vaccination results on the mobile device of the traveller. Global standards recognised by governments are also employed to ensure verified identity and test/vaccine information. A government-issued ePassport is used to verify the identity of the user. It also serves to create a digital representation of the user’s passport to allow the information to be sent electronically in a secured way that is linked to their verified identity.

Currently the main vaccination requirement for entry into some countries is for yellow fever. Under the International Health Regulations, this is managed by the “yellow card” or International Certificate of Vaccination and Prophylaxis. The World Health Organization (WHO) is developing digital standards that will make these vastly more secure and will dramatically reduce fraud. Upon being ready, the IATA Travel Pass will be able to accommodate such new global standards.

IATA is also partnering with selected and established laboratories to securely link their test results with the verified identity of the IATA Travel Pass holder. Nick Careen, IATA Senior Vice President, airport, passenger, cargo and security said in a statement that the IATA Travel Pass is being built to help people reconnect the world safely. He shared that IATA has brought advancements in global standards like e-ticketing and mobile boarding passes to consumers in all parts of the world and stated that the unique capability demonstrates that it can work with industry and governments to re-shape travel processes based on global standards.

Alexandre de Juniac, Chief Executive, IATA added that testing is the immediate solution to safely re-open borders and re-connect people and the same method is eventually likely to transition to vaccination requirements. He stated that in either case, a secure system to manage COVID-19 testing or vaccination information is critical and shared that the IATA Travel Pass is being built with data security, convenience and verification as top priorities as a solution that both travellers and governments can trust.

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