Big data is being used to identify high-risk airline passengers as part of IBM's passenger analysis solution to improve border security.

The Australian Customs and Border Protection Service has implemented the solution, which eliminates the process of manually pulling data from multiple systems, allowing it to cope with the increasing number of international passengers.

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Customs' officials now receive real-time data for all departures and arrivals, allowing them to more quickly and accurately zero-in on potentially high-risk passengers.

Developed and deployed by by IBM, it collects and stores Passenger Name Record (PNR) data which is then risk assessed.

PNR data is shared between airline carriers and customs' officials and enables them to quickly assess any risk passengers may pose in accordance with the recently established global standard.

Australia is only the second country in the world, following Canada, to adopt the new standard developed by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) with input from airlines, governments and service providers (including IBM), over the past three years.

Steve Bingham, Managing Partner, Global Business Services, IBM A/NZ, said Big Data had the power to "revolutionise" border security efforts, enabling more intelligent, globally interconnected data gathering and analysis.

"IBM's strong relationship with the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service is the result of true collaboration over many years," he said. "We are pleased to have applied IBM's proven global capabilities in customs and border protection to develop a solution that leads the way internationally when it comes to border security."

Customs' national manager for target assessment and selection, Terry Wall, said nearly 30 million airline passengers passed through Australia's borders over the past 12 months, which was an increase of 5 per cent on the year before.

"With IBM's advanced passenger analysis solution integrated with our existing risk assessment tools, we can look at a range of data, using the Government's criteria, and identify potentially high-risk passengers and ensure our resources are deployed with greater precision when it comes to securing Australia's borders."