Veridos, a world-leading provider of integrated identity solutions, announced its SmartTravel solution as the latest addition to its innovative portfolio. As part of a comprehensive border control solution, SmartTravel offers an efficient and secure digital visa application and issuance process that benefits travelers and government agencies alike.
The new Veridos solution, SmartTravel, aims to simplify the complete eVisa and electronic travel authorization (eTA) application process by making it more efficient and convenient for both authorities and travelers. SmartTravel covers the entire procedure, from application to the payment of fees and visa approval. A crucial advantage of the web-based solution is that an applicant is no longer required to visit a visa center. So, in the current COVID-19 situation, the individual will not be at risk of infection or inconvenienced by the reduced opening hours of visa application centers. In addition, governments can ask for a detailed travel history to stop travelers from high-risk COVID-19 regions.
SmartTravel incorporates several components. The main feature of the solution is a website where travelers can apply for an eVisa or eTA, obtain information about the procedure (requirements as well as fees), and check the status of their application. Via the website, travelers can submit documents such as passport scans, invitation letters, and vaccination certificates, and make electronic payments. The applicant receives the eVisa by e-mail and can then use it in whichever format is most convenient: as an e-wallet element, an image or pdf file on the smartphone, or a printout.
Government agencies have access to an additional web application, which provides data insights and allows easy handling and examination of submitted requests. Last but not least, SmartTravel includes a smartphone application for law enforcement agencies that can be used to check eVisas and ETAs offline and online.
All eVisa and eTAs are issued in compliance with the ICAO standard on Visible Digital Seals for Non-Electronic Documents with an electronic signature. This ensures a high level of protection against fraudulent activities using copies or forgeries. The solution’s seal generator can be easily integrated into the customer’s existing public key infrastructure.
SmartTravel by Veridos offers numerous advantages for both the applicant and the government agencies. The applicant benefits from a user-friendly website with fast loading and reaction times as well as access to all necessary information about the exact workflow. Market research performed by Veridos has shown that about 80 percent of conventional eVisa websites have serious shortcomings in this respect.
For government agencies, on the other hand, data analytics functions are particularly beneficial. The system can monitor the number of eVisas issued according to nationality, visa type, period, point of entry, or fees charged. Moreover, statistics help to optimize marketing activities in tourism or resource planning at the various border control points.
In addition, authorities benefit from the higher security level offered by SmartTravel. In early application stages, personal data is automatically cross-referenced with various watchlists, such as Interpol’s “Wanted Persons” list, so that applications from suspicious individuals can be rejected. This background check, along with fraud reduction thanks to the ICAO standard and the possibility of offline verifications, ensure the high security of the system.
“A web-based administration system like SmartTravel makes visits to visa application centers obsolete and makes the process more convenient for travelers. These variants of online services have become vitally important, especially in the current COVID-19 situation. Countries and authorities benefit from this new solution through expanded security protection, automatic applicant background checks, and optimized border control,” Dr. Silke Bargstädt-Franke, Head of Product Management at Veridos, explains.