Consortium of International Airlines Chooses Unisys to Boost Physical and Data Security for International Passenger Baggage at Seven Australian Airports
Airline consortium signs six-year, multi-million dollar contract with Unisys to provide advanced baggage reconciliation services
SYDNEY, Australia and BLUE BELL, Pa, 18 May 2021 – Unisys Corporation (NYSE: UIS) today announced that an international airline consortium operating to and from Australia has agreed to a six-year engagement with Unisys to provide an advanced Baggage Reconciliation System (BRS) at seven international airports at Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Cairns, Perth, Adelaide and the Gold Coast. The contract was signed in the first quarter 2021.
The Board of Airline Representatives Australia (BARA), an industry representative organisation for airlines, manages the engagement with Unisys on behalf of the group of airlines. Unisys has worked with BARA since 2004 to provide the Baggage Reconciliation System that links passengers with their bags, tracking both as they move through the system. This latest engagement includes additional data security measures that use artificial intelligence to quickly identify and contain data breaches to further secure the sensitive passenger data associated with the baggage that is handled by the Baggage Reconciliation System. It also supports a new, easy to use, Android-based interface for the hand-held scanners used by baggage handlers.
The Unisys Baggage Reconciliation System is also ready to help airlines support end-to-end tracking of bags throughout the journey, in line with IATA’s Resolution 753 on baggage tracking. This helps airlines to minimise baggage mishandling and is achieved by tracking bags through key points of the journey: spanning passenger handover to airline, loading to the aircraft, transfers to connecting international flights and the final return to the passenger.
The Unisys Baggage Reconciliation System helps airlines comply with the Aviation Security Act's "Triple A" (account and authorise) regulations relating to baggage handling. Prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, BARA’s member airlines processed approximately 14 million bags on flights departing Australia annually. These volumes substantially dropped due to COVID-19 and associated international travel restrictions into Australia. However, during this time many airlines requested passengers check-in their luggage to maintain hygiene within the cabin, it was even more critical to be able to track passengers’ baggage so that it arrived with them.
"Passengers expect both their baggage and their personal information to be safe and secure. Likewise, airlines want to be in control and need to track and know the location of a bag to set standards for improved passenger experience. Given the ongoing impact of COVID-19 on the airline industry, including international travel restrictions across Australian borders, BARA’s member airlines need a flexible solution that can scale up or down in line with fluctuating passenger demand. Unisys pay-as-you-use model provides us with that flexibility while complying with mandated security requirements for baggage handling," said Barry Abrams, BARA Executive Director.
When passengers check in, each bag receives a barcode, which is then scanned and reconciled with a passenger record before the bag can be loaded onto the aircraft. As the airline has a record of the baggage loading order, bags can be quickly identified and recovered if passengers fail to board. This process is designed to prevent a mismatch of passengers and baggage and enhance security levels by avoiding unaccompanied baggage being loaded on the flight. The Unisys Baggage Reconciliation System team provides a fully managed service that includes network infrastructure and security architecture; training; end user device management and onsite support; application management; and round-the-clock help desk support.
Andrew Whelan, Vice President Client Management, Unisys Asia Pacific, said: “Efficient, safe, and secure processes and systems are key to a positive experience for travelers to and from Australia. The COVID-19 situation helped us to take a step back and further invest in optimising our digital offerings for airlines and ground handlers to enhance baggage reconciliation and tracking process. We are delighted to continue our relationship with BARA to provide an affordable solution that combines business efficiencies, secured systems, industry compliance and an improved passenger experience.”
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