by Seyi Lawal
British Airways says its new “Know Me” program involves a thorough Googling of future fliers, so that check-in staff can “put a face to the name before the customer sets foot in the airport,” The Telegraph reports.
“The most recent advancement of the system enables the British Airways team to search Google Images for a photo of specific customers,” a spokesman tells the Daily Mail.
The Telegraph reports that BA already does a cursory check of flight manifests for VIPs like “chief executives of financial companies,” but this new effort goes above and beyond just the one percent.
Results of the searches will be forwarded to front-line staff equipped with iPads, making for more personal (or creepy) interactions with check-in staff or cabin crew. Some privacy advocates are up in arms about the pre-check-in data mining, but at least one industry-watching site points out that Google searches are likely less invasive than airport security procedures these days.
BA says they hope to send out about 4,500 daily “personal recognition messages” this year, The Telegraph reports.