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DBIDS upgrade provides faster, secure gate flow

An Airman from the 5th Security Forces Squadron checks an ID card at Minot Air Force Base, N.D., Sept. 30, 2016. Entry controllers check to verify a person’s access to a military installation through the Defense Biometrics Identification System. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Jessica Weissman)

An Airman from the 5th Security Forces Squadron checks an ID card at Minot Air Force Base, N.D., Sept. 30, 2016. Entry controllers check to verify a person’s access to a military installation through the Defense Biometrics Identification System. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Jessica Weissman)


Thanks to a Defense Biometrics Identification System 5.0 upgrade, ID card scanning speed has been reduced to a single second or less and the DBIDS equipment footprint is 40 percent smaller. This helps alleviate much of the traffic that could often be seen at the gates of Minot Air Force Base.


DBIDS is a card-scanning tool that uses barcodes and biometrics to identify cardholders. The system verifies authorizations and assigns access privileges based on identity, affiliation and the current threat level.


“That equates to rapid identity proofing and vetting of personnel requesting access onto our installations and allows Security Forces to stop potential threats at the base perimeter,” said Derrick Austin, Air Force Security Forces Center Chief of Police Services and Installation Access Control.


Security Forces have been using the devices since 2009, but they were not always as quick to provide scanned data results.


One of AFSFC’s missions is to provide functional implementation guidance for Police Services, which includes DBIDS.  Program goals are to improve the system’s availability, usability and affordability for installation commanders and Security Forces.


The new equipment includes handheld scanners and all-in-one computers. 


The new DBIDS Scanner responds faster and with more accuracy than a human checking an ID card. This means with the heavy volume of traffic entering a base during peak traffic hours, entry controllers can now scan credentials instead of relying on visual ID card inspections, and it lessens the bottleneck or choke point at base entry control points.


Austin said DBIDS is installed at every Air Force installation stateside and overseas, to include Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard bases.


“If a person’s status changes for any reason, like being barred, once the status is updated in DBIDS by the barring authority, all installation entry controllers will see the person was barred,” Austin said. “In six years, DBIDS annual scan statistics increased from 1,000,000 scans per year to 86,000,000 scans in 2016.


The system is maintained by the Defense Manpower Data Center, owners of Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System, or DEERS, and the Real-Time Automated Personnel Identification System, or RAPIDS. 


When a DoD credential is initially scanned at an installation entry control point, the cardholder is automatically registered in DBIDS once the ID Card is validated in DEERS. Also, information is screened by the FBI National Criminal Information Center.  DBIDS is interconnected with DEERS and NCIC for continuous vetting. 


In 2016, entry controllers detected 4,000 people with warrants, flagged 233 armed and dangerous, 71,000 personnel with terminated ID Cards, 3,500 barred, 73,000 expired ID cards and 22,580 ID cards reported lost or stolen.  Austin said that in 2009, it was impossible to detect these categories of unauthorized personnel. “Now, Security Forces are able to stop potential threats, protecting our people and warfighting assets.”


Looking to the future, Austin said experts are already working on the next generation of DBIDS, to include a web-based virtual visitor center to allow DoD card holders to request visitor passes online. Also, DBIDS scanners will be able to read REAL ID compliant driver’s licenses, making visitor passes obsolete.


“If you see your entry controllers using the DBIDS scanners during peak traffic hours, assist them by having your credentials ready to be scanned and understand if minor delays occur, there’s a good chance an unauthorized person has been detected,” Austin said “It’s for everyone’s safety.”

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