This bill aims to tighten up security processes in the Visa Waiver Program (VWP), while requiring additional reporting from the Dept. of Homeland Security (DHS) on program data. The VWP allows citizens of 38 countries to travel to the U.S. for up to 90 days without a visa.
If a country does not agree to share security threat information about its citizens and nationals with the U.S., the DHS Secretary would have the authority to suspend that country from the VWP, without warning.
The automated system used to determine the eligibility of people who want to travel into the U.S. — the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) — would be expanded to also consider "terrorism risk" as a factor. DHS could consequently assess "terrorism risk" when deciding whether a non-citizen is eligible to travel to the U.S.
DHS would also have to deliver a report to Congress on:
The number of people, identified by their countries of citizenship or nationality, denied eligibility to travel, or whose eligibility was revoked under the ESTA because they posed a security threat;
Steps that can be taken to strengthen the ESTA;
Compliance by foreign governments with information sharing agreements on passport theft or loss and whether a country’s citizens or nationals traveling to the U.S. pose a security threat.