Think twice before planning your family vacation to Aruba next year. Big Brother has big plans to monitor American tourists.
A recent article in Breaking Travel News, revealed that the government of Aruba and the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTCC) are bringing facial recognition CCTV cameras to car rental stations and at least 15 hotels on the island by 2020. (To see a list of Aruba’s 274 hotels and villas, click here.)
The pilot is designed to allow travelers to move through airports, car rental stations and hotels based on biometric technology alone.
According to the U.S. Department of State, more than a million U.S. tourists travel to Aruba each year.
Approximately 2 million tourists per year visit Aruba, with nearly 80% of those from the United States.
Which means that Aruba plans to use Vision Box’s facial recognition to identify and track more than a million vacationing Americans.
Due to launch in 2020, the Aruba Happy Flow hotel and car rental extension will allow travelers to trial the application of biometric technology at every stage of the travel process, from arrival, border management, collecting the car rental and checking in at the hotel.
Aruba Happy Flow allows travelers to sign up and be tracked by facial recognition CCTV cameras. Does anyone really think that facial recognition CCTV cameras will only be used to identify those who sign up for the pilot program?
CCTV surveillance cameras run 24/7 and are not designed to distinguish between those who have signed up for Aruba Happy Flow and those who have not. In other words, they will capture everyone’s faces.
Unfortunately, Big Brother has also made in-roads in the U.S. Virgin Islands, which also uses facial recognition and ALPRs and Jamaica with “Jamaica Eye”. Jamaica Eye is modeled after Detroit, Michigan’s highly intrusive Project Green Light cam-share program that gives police access to a businesses CCTV cameras in real-time.
Breaking Travel News writes “fluff” pieces for the travel industry; so it is really no surprise that they would claim that using facial recognition to track travelers is a good thing.
It will enable travelers to move more efficiently, faster and more securely through every part of the travel experience, using biometric technology throughout the entire traveler journey with pilot participants.
Breaking Travel News describes “Aruba Happy Flow,” as the first ‘air and non-air’ pilot of its kind.
Developed in a collaborative effort of Aruba, the Aruba International Airport, the Netherlands, KLM, the Schiphol Group and Vision-Box, Aruba Happy Flow is a unique, game-changing initiative being piloted at Aruba International Airport for two years.
They are right, Aruba Happy Flow “is a unique game-changing initiative” that will allow Big Brother to track American tourists at a popular vacation destination.
Aruba Happy Flow brings many benefits for the Authorities as well: an end-to-end passenger flow orchestration platform connecting all passenger touchpoints guarantees a real-time overview of the passengers’ individual clearance processes, the possibility to efficiently monitor passenger flow, and a centralized control and optimization of the whole security infrastructure.
There it is in black and white: government propaganda at its finest.
“Aruba Happy Flow” is designed to let Big Brother monitor travelers in real-time and “efficiently monitor passenger flow” of people as young as 8 years old, through airports, car rentals and hotels. All that is missing is to monitor travelers at bars, restaurants, and beaches.
The real time and/or advanced information generated makes the processes of all stakeholders more efficient and enhances the service they provide.
It does not get much plainer than that. Facial recognition cameras “enhances” law enforcement services by giving them real-time access to anyone, even children.
Breaking Travel News asked the WTCC what they think of “Aruba Happy Flow” and their response should surprise no one.
We call on other governments to take inspiration from Aruba’s efforts and to test the technology already available to see what works best for their needs.
The WTCC and the World Economic Forum have also created a facial recognition airline passenger tracking program called the “Known Traveler Digital Identity Project” that lists at least 53 biometric initiatives. You know, because one biometric government surveillance program is not enough.
Doesn’t it seem strange that popular American vacation destinations like Aruba, Jamaica and the U.S. Virgin Islands are all using mass surveillance technology? If you want to keep Americans living in a state of constant fear, you target their vacation destinations.
America’s War on Terror is so far-reaching, it is affecting every continent.
Also Read from Activist Post: Biometric ID For Travel Goes Global With New CBP Tourism Partnership
Image credit: The Tenth Amendment Center
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