CHARLESTON AIR FORCE BASE, S.C. –
The section chief of plans and programs with the 437th Security Forces Squadron here released an update April 2 on the base's transition to the Defense Biometric Identification System.
More than 5,800 members of the Charleston AFB community have registered in DBIDS, and an estimated 29,000 remain unregistered, said Bob Trout, the base's DBIDS program manager.
Beginning Oct. 5, people older than 16 who present an unregistered Department of Defense identification card at gate checkpoints will be denied entry and referred to the Visitor Control Center for DBIDS registration.
Those affected include all active-duty, Reserve and retired service members and their family members. DOD civilian employees and long-term visitors must also register in DBIDS.
Registrations in DBIDS at Charleston AFB will not be valid at any other installation using DBIDS. Individuals must also register with those bases.
Two locations are available for DBIDS registration. The first is located at the 437th Force Support Squadron Military Personnel Section in Bldg. 503. The second is at the VCC in front of the Dorchester Road main gate.
Unit security managers are able to expedite processing through mass registrations. Managers requiring details should contact the MPS or VCC.
Individuals often think they will be receiving a new ID when they register, said Erin Munshi, a part-time employee at the VCC. However, registering in DBIDS does not constitute the issuing of a new ID card unless it is found unserviceable, expired, or has a missing barcode.
The majority of those needing to be registered in DBIDS are from the retired community, Mr. Trout said.
Retired Col. James Easley Jr., a volunteer at the Retiree Activities Office, said there were 14,333 retirees reported residing in the local area as of 2007 by the DOD Office of the Actuary.
Many retirees still carry the older DD Form 2 retiree ID card, said Colonel Easley. Because the card has no barcode for scanning, retirees who possess the card must obtain the newer style ID card from the MPS before registering in DBIDS.
AMC has selected five bases within the command to begin implementing DBIDS, and thus far, Charleston AFB is in the lead of the initiative.
"We're way ahead," Mr. Trout said.
DBIDS allows safeguarding personnel, assets and base access more securely, Mr. Trout said, and will not adversely affect gate traffic.
"It takes no longer than taking an ID card and looking at it," he said.
Common access card holders can be registered into DBIDS in less than a minute, Mr. Trout said, and in three to 10 minutes for those with IDs other than a common access card.
"Usually, people are shocked that it was so quick to do," said Heather Mullen, a security clerk at the VCC.
Although DBIDS has its advantages, there is a key ingredient in the biometric system able to slow things down - the fingerprinting. The new system uses a scanner to capture a print from each cardholder.
"It's probably one of the most sensitive pieces of equipment I've ever touched in my life," Ms. Mullen said.
Special considerations are observed for physical impairments that preclude scanning for a fingerprint.
Anyone who may have registered in DBIDS, but wants to verify, may call the VCC for assistance at 963-5729.
The MPS performs registrations Mondays through Fridays between 7:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. and closes on Wednesdays at 1:30 p.m. The VCC hours are between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m. Additionally, the VCC is open Saturday and Sunday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.