US-VISIT Exit Program Now Active at Newark Airport

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security announced this week that, as off January 19, 2005, foreign visitors at Newark Liberty International Airport will be required to follow certain check out procedures prior to departing from Newark. The US-VISIT pilot exit program will test three exit procedures, including two index fingerscans and digital photographs. US-VISIT is currently operating in five airports in the U.S. and, later this month, will be active in three additional airports.

Foreign visitors departing from Newark are now required to follow one of the following three processes:

Visitors will check out of the U.S. at an exit station, where their travel documents will be read, their two index fingers will be scanned and their digital photo will be taken. Visitors will receive a printed receipt that verifies they have properly checked out.

At a second station, visitors will follow the same procedures as stated above, with the addition of one further step. Visitors will be required to present their receipt at the departure gate. Workstation attendants will then scan both the receipt and the visitor’s index finger to ensure identity.

A third alternative involves a biometric check out process with a handheld device used by a workstation attendant at the departure gate. At the gate, the visitor’s travel documents will be reviewed, they will have both index fingers scanned and their digital photo will be taken. They will receive a printed receipt to verify they have properly checked out.

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