Go to contents

US enhances screening of visa-free travelers to find terrorists

US enhances screening of visa-free travelers to find terrorists

Posted November. 05, 2014 07:00,   


Korean citizens who enter the U.S. without a visa must report their name, address, contact information in the U.S., and other names used.

US Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson said in a statement on Monday, “We are taking this step to enhance the security of the Visa Waiver Program, to learn more about travelers from countries from whom we do not require a visa.”

Accordingly, people from 90-day Visa Waiver Program countries including Korea will have to provide additional information in an online system called Electronic System for Travel Authorization, or ESTA. So far, visitors from 38 Visa Waiver Program countries had been approved through ESTA only reporting their name, date of birth, address, and passport number. The additional information required includes the issue date and expiration date of a passport, contact information in the U.S., other names used, and parents’ names.

The Department of Homeland Security said that the move was in response to the security threat posed by the possible radicalization of Islamic State foreign fighters in Syria and Iraq. U.S. intelligence estimates that around 15,000 people from at least 80 countries in Europe, Asia, and North America work for the Islamic State or related organizations in Syria.