What is CAT?
Credential Authentication Technology (CAT) is a security game changer, ensuring ID authentication, reservation verification and Secure Flight pre-screening status are known in “near” real-time at the airport security checkpoint.
CAT is an effective tool for TSA officers, providing enhanced fraudulent ID detection capabilities while confirming the identity and flight information of travelers.
When a CAT unit is in use, a TSA officer will ask travelers to provide their photo IDs. The officer will insert each photo ID into the CAT unit where the ID is scanned and analyzed.
CAT is linked electronically to the Secure Flight database, which confirms travelers’ flight details, ensuring they are ticketed for travel that day. CAT also displays the pre-screening status (such as TSA PreCheck®) the traveler is eligible for, all without a boarding pass. However, CAT does not eliminate the requirement for passengers to check-in with their airline. Passengers still need their boarding pass to show the airline representative at their gate before boarding their flight.
Advantages of CAT
CAT improves the travel document checker’s ability to accurately authenticate passenger identification and pre-screening status, addressing the vulnerabilities associated with ID and boarding pass fraud.
Acceptable Forms of ID
Passengers 18 years old and over must show valid identification at the airport checkpoint in order to travel. CAT can scan the following types of identification:
- U.S. passport
- U.S. passport card
- U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) ID. This includes IDs for active duty and retired military, their dependents, and DOD civilians. Also, the DOD Common Access Card (CAC).
- U.S. Merchant Mariner ID
- Trusted Traveler card:
- Global Entry
- Secure Electronic Network for Traveler Rapid Inspection (SENTRI)
- Free and Secure Trade (FAST) ID
- NEXUS card
- Permanent Resident Card/Resident Alien Card (I-551)
- Border Crossing Card/nonimmigrant visa (DSP-150)
- DHS refugee travel document (I-571)
- U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Employment Authorization Document (I-766)
- Driver’s or enhanced driver’s license
- Identification card issued by or under authority of a state Department of Motor Vehicles or equivalent state office that is intended or commonly accepted for the purpose of identifying individuals
- United Nations laissez-passer
- Canadian driver’s license
- Indian and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC) card