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Biometrics

Automatic face recognition in UK airports

7 May, 2008
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(Dieser Artikel ist auch in deutscher Sprache verfügbar)

Starting this summer, the UK Border Agency will use facial recognition technology at automated unmanned gates. A machine would accept or reject the match between the scan and the computer information on people with biometric passports.

The pilot project will be open to UK and EU citizens holding new biometric passports. "We think a machine can do a better job (than manned passport inspections). What will the public reaction be? Will they use it? We need to test and see how people react and how they deal with rejection. We hope to get the trial up and running by the summer" said Gary Murphy, head of operational design and development for the UK Border Agency, during a biometrics-related conference that took place in London in April 2008.

The European Commission continues to pressure for early fingerprinting

9 April, 2008
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(Dieser Artikel ist auch in deutscher Sprache verfügbar)

In spite of the recommendation of the European Data Protection Supervisor, Peter Hustinx, that the minimum age for fingerprinting should be 14, a spokesperson from the European Commission (EC) expressed on 2 April 2008 the EC intention to push for fingerprinting children starting at the age of six, in order to include the information in the biometric passports.

Jacques Barrot, the Justice, Freedom and Security Commissioner, considered that "The proposals we put forward are balanced ones", explaining that fingerprinting was an important tool in fighting human trafficking.

During the meeting on 12 February 2008 the high-level Strategic Committee on Immigration, Frontiers and Asylum (SCIFA)/Mixed Committee discussed the age

Fingerprinting the fingerprint proponent

9 April, 2008
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(Dieser Artikel ist auch in deutscher Sprache verfügbar)

EDRi-member Chaos Computer Club (CCC) - Germany has published in the latest issue of their magazine Die Datenschleuder the fingerprint of one of the best known proponents of digital fingerprints in passports - Mr. Wolfgang Schäuble, the German Minister of Internal Affairs. The fingerprint has been printed on a plastic foil, that can replicate the fingerprint when it is pressed on a biometric reader.

CCC activists wanted to make a point in their fight against digital fingerprints in any ID document, considering such data is easy to collect and reproduce. Despite the numerous warnings, since November 2007 the German passports have included a biometric chip containing fingerprints that can be

Recommended Reading

26 March, 2008
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(Dieser Artikel ist auch in deutscher Sprache verfügbar)

EDPS Opinion on biometrics in passports: exemptions welcomed but unsatisfactory

The EDPS welcomes the introduction of exemptions from giving fingerprints based on the age of the person or his/her inability to provide fingerprints. These exemptions are part of the fallback procedures that should be implemented. However, the EDPS still considers these exemptions as insufficient to remedy the imperfections of biometrics, such as the impact of misidentification or failure to enrol.

Peter Hustinx, EDPS, says: "The fact that the Commission took into account the need for fallback procedures, stated in previous opinions, is more than welcomed. These exemptions are however still unsatisfactory. They fail to

Information Commissioner warns against fingerprinting at new UK terminal

26 March, 2008
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(Dieser Artikel ist auch in deutscher Sprache verfügbar)

Mr. Richard Thomas, UK Information Commissioner warned Heathrow airport operator BAA that the plans to fingerprint all passengers at the new Terminal 5 may breach the UK Data Protection Act.

The 5.5 billion euro worth Terminal 5 was opened by the Queen on 16 March and is due to receive its first passengers on 27 March 2008. The airport plans to apply security measures that involve fingerprinting all passengers including domestic ones claiming fingerprinting was necessary so that all passengers could mix freely in Terminal 5 shopping mall area. Fingerprinting is already being applied for domestic passengers at Terminal 1. The passengers place a hand on a scanner which records four fingerprints and

Biometric data from non-EU travellers

13 February, 2008
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(Dieser Artikel ist auch in deutscher Sprache verfügbar)

A set of new measures including biometric data from non-EU travellers are being proposed these days by the European Commission (EC). The proposals, drafted by Franco Frattini, the European Commissioner for Justice, Freedom and Security, are being put forward by the EC, arguing that the cross-border policy has to be revised to face the new challenges related to terrorism, organised crime and illegal migration.

The package proposes the creation of an entry/exit register of non-European visitors to the EU bloc that will record the dates of entry and exit of each non-EU individual admitted to the Schengen visa-free area using biometric identifiers. In cases when a person's visa has expired, an alert can be

Key privacy concerns in France 2007

30 January, 2008
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(Dieser Artikel ist auch in deutscher Sprache verfügbar)

6 January 2008 was the 30th anniversary of the French Data Protection Act. But no one really cared. The only French contribution to this 2nd European DP day has been the publication by the CNIL (French DP Authority) of a poll result that it commissioned in November 2007. The poll indicates that 50% of the asked persons know the CNIL. However, only 26% of them feel they are informed well enough on their rights in terms of personal data protection, and 61% consider that the constitution of databases is breaching their right to privacy. Moreover, a former study on Internet usages conducted in June 2007 reveals that the mostly cited barrier to Internet use is the fear that personal data are not protected enough (by 29% of the Internet users and 23%

Key privacy concerns in Czech Republik 2007

30 January, 2008
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(Dieser Artikel ist auch in deutscher Sprache verfügbar)

Last year has seen an increased number attempts from government bodies to extend their powers and make it easier to access people's private information. To name a few, there were legal proposals to increase the number of agencies authorized to access and process electronic communication data collected by telecommunication companies under the Data Retention law, national DNA database enlargement, plans for various administrative database sharing, introduction of even more CCTV systems and the pressure on air travel operators to share records about their passengers. The introduction of biometric into travel documents data as a mean of identification and the use of contactless chip technologies

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