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Daon: Pioneering a mobile health passport for safe travel

An Irish mobile health passport is providing air travel with a much-needed shot in the arm

VeriFLY, the mobile health passport from Irish biometric identity assurance specialist Daon, is providing international airlines with a ticket to fly.

American Airlines, the world’s biggest airline by fleet size, has introduced Daon’s VeriFLY app to create a mobile health passport for all international travel to the US.

The app already helps passengers coming from all international destinations to understand and verify their travel requirements. It now also provides international travellers with a simple and secure way to confirm their destination’s Covid-19 requirements.

In January American Airlines expanded access to the app at all airports in support of the US government’s requirement that all passengers aged two years and older, travelling to the USA from any international location, must test negative for Covid-19 within three days of departure.

Customers travelling to the USA can now use the VeriFLY app to confirm they have met testing requirements. To date thousands of passengers have travelled using VeriFLY.

“We’re expanding our work with VeriFLY to quickly evolve our usage of the app and make international travel easier for our customers,” explained Julie Rath, Vice President of Customer Experience at American.

“We support the implementation of a global program to require Covid-19 testing for travellers to the United States, and we want to do everything we can to make travel a seamless experience for customers. We’ve received positive feedback about the app so far and look forward to more customers having the opportunity to use it.”

“The travel industry is undertaking monumental changes in order to protect the health and safety of travellers now and into the future,” said Máire P. Walsh, Senior Vice President of Digital Technologies, Enterprise Ireland. “The innovation, flexibility, and drive that Daon and their partners have demonstrated during this ongoing crisis will help restore traveller confidence.  This is just one example of how innovation from Ireland, one of the leading travel tech hubs in the world, is supporting travel industry recovery.”

Simple and effective

A key part of the app’s success is its simplicity. Passengers download VeriFLY from the iOS App or Google Play stores, create an account, enter their destination and upload required documentation, now including proof of a negative Covid-19 test.

After creating a secure profile on it, VeriFLY verifies that the customer’s data matches a country’s requirements and displays a simple pass or fail message.

This simple message streamlines the check-in and documentation verification process at the airport before departure. The app also provides travellers with reminders when their travel window is coming to a close and if their credential has expired.

Powered by Daon

VeriFLY is developed and managed by Irish biometric authentication and identity assurance solutions provider, Daon.  The privately owned software company is a pioneer in the field of authentication and also works with some of the world’s leading banking and financial services companies.

Founded in 2000, Daon operates across six continents. Its award-winning identity assurance technology successfully performs 100M+ authentications each day for iconic companies around the world, protecting individual’s life savings, banking accounts and other consequential transactions.

Daon is ISO certified for ISO 27001:2013 the international standard for information security management and the 27018:2019 extension for the management of Personally Identifiable Information (PII).

The company is subject to rigorous security tests and privacy audits by some of the largest governments and commercial organizations globally on a monthly basis. Daon’s global headquarters are in Washington, DC, and it maintains offices in Dublin, Belgrade and Canberra, Australia.

It was Daon’s pioneering methods of deploying digital identity solutions for border security agencies and high street banks that led to the creation of VeriFLY.

Gaining altitude

American Airlines is one of a number of international airlines now using VeriFLY.  Its joint business and Oneworld partner British Airways has become the first airline in the UK to trial it.

It will be used during the trial, which began February 2021, on all transatlantic routes between London and the US and has since expanded to all inbound international flights to the UK. Use of the VeriFLY app will be optional and customers will also continue to be able to provide evidence that they meet the US entry requirements at check-in.

Sean Doyle, British Airways’ CEO said: “Although flying is currently restricted, it is essential we do as much as we can now to help those who are eligible to fly and prepare to help our customers navigate the complexities around changing global entry requirements when the world re-opens.”

“We remain focused and committed to finding user-friendly, evidence-based solutions to make journeys as seamless they can be.”

Alaska Airlines allows international passengers arriving into the USA to streamline their required Covid-19 documentation via VeriFLY too. Alaska Airlines and its regional partners serve more than 115 destinations across the United States and North America.

Taking flight

It’s not just airlines that are adopting VeriFLY. As a result of the pandemic, Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia, one of the USA’s largest exhibition venues, has deployed the VeriFLY digital health passport to expedite a safe return to work for its employees and contractors.

Using the VeriFLY app, employees are asked to complete a self-certified health questionnaire that collects real-time wellness information. Depending on the information collected, the employee receives either a unique Digital Pass (QR code) or a notice of non-authorization.

“In almost any industry and workspace design, mobile device-based identity and health credentials – secured with biometric authentication technology – can enable businesses to re-establish customer trust and safely welcome back their employees,” said Tom Grissen, CEO, Daon.

Other use cases include assuring consumers of their safety when interacting with employees at hotels, banks, gyms and restaurants, as well as in airlines. It can help elevate consumer trust in workers in the gig economy, such as ride sharing and food delivery, and help ensure tradespeople such as plumbers and electricians can enter people’s homes.

All this activity fits in with Daon’s vision: “To be the world’s leading human identity platform enabling people across any channel to easily assert and protect their identity.”

In the midst of a pandemic, that vision is helping to ensure international airline travel is, once more, cleared for take-off.

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