PUBLISHED : Friday, 17 December, 2004, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 17 December, 2004, 12:00am

With a swipe of a card and press of the thumb, Hongkongers pass through the Lowu checkpoint. Three 'e-channels' were introduced yesterday at the border crossing, allowing people to insert their smart identity cards into a reader and put their thumbs on a scanner to be verified before entering the mainland. People who have trouble getting their fingerprints scanned could use the regular counters, said the Immigration Department, which advised travellers to keep their thumbs clean and dry. The e-channels are expected to increase the flow through the checkpoint by half.