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Biometrics - Case Studies

Eastnets uses Zebra Card Printers to produce contactless smart cards at Dubai International Airport


Eastnets, a Dubai based leading Payments and Security Solution Provider, and Zebra Card Printer solutions partner since 1996, has provided an advanced Bitaqat-e ID Card Management and Issuing Systems to Dubai International Airport.  The solution, only found in two other airports worldwide, introduces the use of smart card technology at new electronic gates (eGates) in the airport, designed to reduce delays and enable registered passengers automated entry or exit through the airport.  Over 25 Zebra Card Printers are now being used at the airport to produce the contactless smart cards needed to accelerate immigration procedures and enable passengers to merely swipe their cards and have a three second finger print scan and then they are free to move quickly through the airport.


With air travel on the increase in the Middle East and a heightened need for security at all airports Dubai Naturalisation and Residency Department (DNRD) acknowledged the need to introduce electronic gates to speed up access through Dubai International Airport.  However, they wanted to ensure that only leading edge technology was used to complete the project.  As a recognized market leader of Security Solutions in the Middle East, and in partnership with Zebra Card Printer Solutions, Eastnets were able to provide a complete end-to-end solution.

We feel immensely proud to have won this impressive contract for the IDM at Dubai International Airport's electronic gates.  It reinforces Eastnets image as a reputed player in the field of plastic card industry and ID issuing systems' said Hazem Mulhim, CEO, Eastnets.

There is a growing need for secure plastic card solutions across many industry sectors, but airports and airlines in particular are recognizing the need to introduce technology to improve security and efficiency of their operations.  Zebra Card Printers have fulfilled an important role in this project meeting the requirements for providing the best quality, functionality, and security.  We have a strong partnership with Eastnets and we look forward to providing them with optimum levels of support and superior products to help them win even more business', says Christophe Malgorn, Zebra Card Printer Solutions Sales Manager for the Middle East.

The partnership with Zebra Card Printer Solutions meant that Eastnets had full support throughout the bid with the provision of numerous marketing materials, the latest product information, product training and competitive prices.


Dubai Naturalization and Residency Department recognised the need to offer a completely automated solution to enable quick access to passengers at Dubai International Airport.  With a requirement from the IT department to use only leading edge technology for the project they chose Eastnets who, as a reseller for Zebra Card Printer Solutions, were able to fully meet their needs in providing a complete end to end solution, with full integration and a straight through processing application.  The resulting solution introduces a card management and issuing solution, Bitaqae ®, which controls the data entry, enrolment, issuance system, personalization, and RFID encoding capabilities and produces contactless smart cards using Zebra printers with Mifare smart chip cards.

Eastnets Launched the project in 2002 with just three issuing stations at the departure terminal and its success has meant that a further dozen issuing stations have now been introduced across different locations in Dubai including the Arrival Terminal, the municipality, DNATA and Jebel Ali Free Zone.  Over 100,000 cards have been created to date using over 25 Zebra printers to produce the contactless smart cards on Mifare cards with lamination that include ultra violet and micro-printing security features.

"The e-Gate project is the result of over 10 months of concerted efforts by the staff in our IT department and has been devised using cutting edge technologies that ensure accuracy and speed.  Since the entire plan had been conceptualised in-house, we did not have to outsource much of the components.  However, the ID Card Management System (IDM) was one of the critical components requiring specialized expertise.  Hence, we decided to assign the contract to Eastern Networks (Eastnets) because of its proven abilities in this field.  We are pleased with their professional approach which has led to the successful implementation of this project, the first of its kind in the Middle East." - Lieutenant Colonel Khalid Majid Lootah, Head of IT Section, DNRD.


The e-gate card is now being issued to UAE residents, Gulf Cooperative Country residents and 35 other countries across the globe and with 100,000 cardholders to date is continuing to experience a strong rate of adoption.  The use of leading technology including contactless access control and biometric identification has enabled a ‘fast-track' movement of passengers through arrivals and departures area at Dubai International Airport.

Eastnets, through their partnership with Zebra Card Printer Solutions were able to provide a complete end-to-end solution of a fully integrated ID Card Management solution to DNRD.

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