Gen Tinaphat along with Deputy Police Spokesman Pol Col Krisana Patanacharoen and Gunther Mull, CEO of DERMALOG Identification Systems – the company that supplies the biometric systems – unveiled 76 new systems at Phuket International Airport putting them to the test for the first time.
Gen Tinaphat told The Phuket News today, “There are 76 biometric systems at Phuket International Airport now ready to use. There are also four systems installed at Chalong Pier and one at the Phuket Provincial Police Office. All should be fully operational by July 1.
“The new system will replace the old with modern fingerprint and face-recognition software and passport scanners,” he explained.
“All equipment is produced by German company DERMALOG which supplies 85 countries at present. The systems are being installed in 170 locations nationwide at land, sea and airport immigration checkpoints.
“The total cost of the project is B2.1 million and it will help solve the problem of people entering the country with fake documents and transnational terrorist infiltration which paints a bad picture of Thailand and affects foreign investment and tourism,” Gen Tinaphat stressed.
Newly appointed Immigration Bureau (IB) Commissioner, Pol Lt Gen Sompong Chingduang, in April, highlighted that IB is ramping up the use of biometric technology at international airports to guard against transnational criminals.
He said that biometric identification, such as retina scans, will play an increasingly important role in preventing the movement of criminals throughout the region.
He told the Bangkok Post that the IB’s job mainly involves safeguarding national security and providing assistance to tourists. “If we focus too much on security, services for tourists will be affected, but if we are lax about security, the country could become a hideout for transnational criminals,” Pol Lt Gen Sompong said.
“We want to assist good tourists who have purchasing power. They bring income to the country,” Pol Lt Gen Sompong said.