Earlier this year, in conjunction with their new ticket pricing scheme, Walt Disney World added a biometric finger scanning requirement to your admission. Mike at Tech:Knowledge discovered the change on his trip and was not all that pleased.
Annual Passholders at the park have been using the finger scanners for
years. Yeah, it’s a little gross sticking your fingers in a slot where
two minutes ago someone with a disease might have done the same thing.
But for the value provided by the APs I didn’t mind. Nor did I think
about the privacy concerns.
Although Disney does not currently use a customer tracking system, out
of contract obligations to a sponsor (is my understanding), they
certainly have the technology to do so. Every piece of admission media
has a magnetic strip and/or barcode uniquely identifying the ticket and
its holder. When that ticket is scanned into the park the date and time
is written in the magnetic strip and entered into a database. Guest
relations can scan that ticket and track its history. The fact that
tickets are often used to obtain discounts, charge purchases to your
resort room, obtain fast passes, means that there are thousands of
points throughout the day where the holder of a particular piece of
admission media can be tracked and a dossier compiled.
Now, combine this with the biometric finger scanning and a casino
security quality photo id system (which comes as an option to the
scanning setup) and you can attach that dossier to a specific
individual and track their movements throughout the resort.
To the best of my knowledge Disney currently does nothing of the sort.
They’re just concerned with people reselling partially used admission
media which is against Florida state law. Requiring biometric finger
scans is just a step to quash that.