• It is official: U.K. national ID cards scrapped within 100 days

    The new U.K. government made it official; within 100 days, the biometric national ID scheme would scrapped, and the National Identity Register, the database that contains the biographic and biometric fingerprint data of card holders, would also be destroyed

  • U.K. second-generation ePassports project appears doomed

    A clause in the coalition agreement between the Conservatives and the Liberal democrats call for chopping the second generation e-Passport scheme initiated be the departing Labor government; the U.K. biometric industry may not like this, but it is not yet clear what the impact on the industry will be; depending upon the water-tightness of contracts already signed with suppliers, the ID card project could still be fundamentally redesigned, rather than scrapped in its entirety; also, many other U.K. biometric projects will continue — IDENT1, Border Agency’s visa application program, eBorders program, and various Ministry of Defense documents that use the technology

  • Aussie government agency proposes finger biometrics for background checks

    Australian government’s crime tracking agency has proposed tying fingerprints to passports and drivers licenses in an effort to reduce false identification for background checks; the plan, under high-level government talks, would reduce the time spent by law enforcement and customs agencies on sifting through possible identification matches

  • The Western Identification Network: a multi-state fingerprint identification system

    States can no avail themselves of the Automated Fingerprint Identification System (AFIS); AFIS comprises a high-speed computer system that digitizes, stores, and compares fingerprint data and images; fingerprints entered into AFIS are searched against millions of prints on file and are identified by experts from resulting candidate lists; AFIS standards have been promulgated by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Criminal Justice Information Services Division (CJIS), and the system supports member submissions to the FBI through its CJIS wide-area network (WAN) connection

  • Awareness card for vehicle-borne IEDs

    First responders may now download a card which will help them identify — and respond to — IEDs and other suspected explosives

  • ICE says it will automatically vet juvenile immigrants fingerprints

    In a blow to San Francisco’s sanctuary law, the fingerprints of juvenile immigrants charged with serious offenses will also be automatically forwarded to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)

  • Australia's Biometrics Institute launches privacy awareness checklist

    Australia’s Biometric Institute will release its Biometrics Institute Privacy Awareness Checklist (PAC) to its member organizations to promote good privacy practices; the Biometrics Institute Privacy Code already is at a higher level than the Australian Privacy Act 1988

  • More counties join Secure Communities

    Across the United States, 135 jurisdictions in 17 states have joined DHS’s (and DOJ’s) Secure Communities project; Secure Communities offers local jurisdiction an information-sharing capability: if an individual is arrested, his or her fingerprint information will now be simultaneously checked against both FBI criminal history records and the biometrics-based immigration records maintained by DHS, meaning that both criminal and immigration records of all local arrestees will be checked

  • A new U.S. biometrics agency created to manage DoD-wide responsibilities

    The role of biometric information in U.S. national security is increasing, and the U.S. government creates the Biometrics Identity Management Agency (BIMA); BIMA, a component of the U.S. Army, will lead Department of Defense activities “to prioritize, integrate, and synchronize biometrics technologies and capabilities and to manage the Department of Defense’s authoritative biometrics database to support the National Security Strategy”; DoD says: “Biometrics is an important enabler that shall be fully integrated into the conduct of DoD activities to support the full range of military operations”

  • Florida's new fingerprint technology helps law enforcement

    Florida Department of Law Enforcement arrests 3,000 people every day; checking their fingerprints against Florida’s bank of 16.5 million prints on file was becoming a problem; a new FALCON fingerprinting system, installed at a cost of $7.4 million and in use since last June, has solved these problems

  • Update: The FBI caps nearly 90 years of use of biometrics with its Biometric Center of Excellence

    The FBI has been using various forms of biometric identification since its earliest days — from photographs and fingerprints in its first years (and assuming responsibility for managing the U.S. fingerprint collection in 1924), to applying handwriting analysis in the Lindbergh kidnapping case in 1932, to its laboratory’s pioneering work on raising latent finger, palm, and other soft tissue prints from evidence, to today’s development of DNA analysis as a means of genetic fingerprinting

  • Proposed bill calls for ID card for U.S. workers to curb illegal immigration

    Advocates of immigration reform are pushing for a bill in the Senate which would create a national biometric identification card all American workers would eventually be required to obtain; the biometric data would likely be either fingerprints or a scan of the veins in the top of the hand; employers will not be able to hire applicants who do not present a valid ID

  • Canada to use DHS's Secure Flight rules

    Starting in December, passengers on Canadian airlines flying to, from, or even over the United States without ever landing there, will only be allowed to board the aircraft once the U.S. DHS has determined they are not terrorists

  • U.S. buys iris scanners for prisons to prevent mistaken release of inmates

    The U.S. government has allocated funds for prisons to purchase iris recognition scanning machines; the purpose is create fool-proof system which would prevent inmates from impersonating other inmates to gain early release

  • New Hampshire considering banning biometrics in ID cards

    The New Hampshire legislature is considering a bill which would ban biometric data, including fingerprints, retinal scans, DNA, palm prints, facial feature patterns, handwritten signature characteristics, voice data, iris recognition, keystroke dynamics, and hand characteristics from being used in state or privately issued ID cards, except for employee ID cards