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    Russian Railways talked about testing boarding a train using a QR code

    MOSCOW, February 21It is planned to test boarding passengers on a train using a QR code in 2024, first on Lastochkas, and then on Sapsan, Anton Petrov, head of the Russian Railways high-speed transport directorate, said in an interview.

    “Testing should begin this year, but on Lastochka trains, on one of the routes. "Sapsan" will be the second stage. This is a project of the Ministry of Digital Development and Russian Railways. We expect that we will become a testing ground for testing this technology. From a technical point of view, namely ensuring that QR codes are verified by mobile devices of the conductor, we are ready. Now we are waiting for decisions at the ministry and company level to start this test,” said Petrov.

    He told how this experiment will take place. The conductor's mobile device will automatically download the passenger data that he specified when purchasing the ticket.

    “The conductor will only need to use a mobile device to read the QR code from the screen of the passenger’s mobile phone from the State Services application to receive confirmation of legitimacy,” Petrov explained.

    Now, to board a train, a passenger can show a paper passport even without presenting a ticket. In 2024, Russian Railways plan to test boarding a train using biometrics. Deputy General Director of the company Evgeny Charkin said in the summer of 2023 that this is supposed to be tested in the first quarter of 2024 for passengers of the Sapsan (runs between Moscow and St. Petersburg).

    Russian Railways General Director Oleg Belozerov said in an interview that the company is developing an algorithm for identifying train passengers using biometrics and is considering doing this as an option when purchasing a ticket or when boarding a train. He noted that Russian Railways is approaching this project very carefully, because there are certain risks when using biometrics. The holding is working to do this safely.
    Russian Railways reported that, together with relevant departments, they are exploring the possibility of boarding a train upon presentation of a two-dimensional bar code (QR code) in the Gosuslugi mobile application. They noted that such an opportunity for passengers would be purely voluntary; there was no talk of any forced transition to biometric boarding in the coming years.

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