eBorders winner is confirmed

eBorders winner is confirmed

Consortium led by Raytheon signs £650m government contract

The £650m eBorders deal has been signed by the Trusted Borders consortium led by US defence supplier Raytheon, as revealed exclusively by Computing earlier this month (1 November).

The government announced the deal alongside the creation of a UK Border Agency uniting immigration, customs and visa checks.

“These measures are the biggest change to border security for 30 years,” UK Home Office minister Liam Byrne told Computing.

eBorders will log and screen 100 million passenger movements by April 2009 and 95 per cent of all border crossings by the end of 2010.

The government’s final impact assessment, due before the end of the year, is not expected to alter the anticipated cost to the transport sector.

The draft published in August predicted investment worth £72m and 10-year running costs of £322m. Airlines will be the most affected, with £52m in capital and £278m of ongoing costs.cccc

The government is bullish in responding to grumbling from the travel industry.

“Bringing people into and out of the country is good for the economy, but it comes with an obligation to play a part in the UK’s wider security,” said Byrne.

“That will cost money. But it is for a greater aim, which is a system of trusted border security.”

Byrne denied the rumour that Raytheon’s low price clinched the deal, and said Trusted Borders ­ which includes Accenture, Detica, Serco, QinetiQ, Steria, Capgemini and DAON ­ was a clear winner over the rival BT-led consortium.

“The evaluation presented to ministers showed an organisation a lot stronger across the board,” he said.

eBorders is a key win for Raytheon. Programme director Brooke Hoskins said: “It is a huge deal in terms of moving into international business and into the intelligence market.”

The transition to eBorders from IBM’s Semaphore pilot scheme will start in March, including an upgraded operations centre and scaling up the trials’ 80 carriers and 106 routes.