US CBP Officers in Laredo Detect Impostor Through Facial Biometrics

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), officers at the Laredo Port of Entry, identified one Mexican female traveler as an impostor to a United States lawful permanent resident card with the help of biometric facial comparison technology. 

“CBP officers employ an effective combination of their law enforcement experience along with biometric facial comparison technology in order to detect travelers who allegedly attempt to gain unlawful entry into the United States at our international bridges,” said Port Director Alberto Flores, Laredo Port of Entry.

The apprehension occurred on Monday, Sept. 20, at the Gateway to the Americas Bridge. A CBP officer processing pedestrians arriving from Mexico, referred a female traveler for a secondary inspection after she presented a United States lawful permanent resident card as her own. CBP’s biometric facial comparison technology reported a mismatch between the traveler and the true bearer of the document.

During secondary inspection, CBP officers discovered that the woman was a citizen and national of Mexico, without valid documents to enter the United States. CBP determined the woman to be an impostor for allegedly attempting to use a genuine travel document that was lawfully issued to another person to gain illegal entry into the United States. CBP seized the document and arrested the woman for alleged violation of federal immigration law.  She faces possible expedited removal from the United States upon final adjudication of her case.

CBP uses biometric facial comparison technology to further secure and enhance the international arrivals process while protecting the privacy of all travelers. When travelers arrive at a Port of Entry, they pause for a photo at the primary inspection point. That photograph is then compared to the traveler’s passport, visa or resident card photo retrieved from government holdings to seamlessly automate the identity verification process. The use of facial biometrics protects the identity of travelers and adds another layer of security while safeguarding privacy and enhancing the customer experience.

To date, close to 100 million travelers have participated in the biometric facial comparison process at air, land, and seaports of entry. Since September 2018, CBP has leveraged facial biometrics to prevent more than 900 impostors from illegally entering the United States by using genuine travel documents that were issued to other people.

CBP’s border security mission is led at ports of entry by CBP officers from the Office of Field Operations. CBP officers screen international travelers and cargo and search for illicit narcotics, unreported currency, weapons, counterfeit consumer goods, prohibited agriculture, and other illicit products that could potentially harm the American public, U.S. businesses, and our nation’s safety and economic vitality.