“The most important aspect in our border security improvement is our migration from the machine-readable passport to our e-passport or biometric passport, which is almost counterfeit-proof.” – Hon. Rayburn Blackmoore, Minister for National Security and Home Affairs, Commonwealth of Dominica
Biometric passports are an important part of recently announced border security upgrades coming to the Commonwealth of Dominica. The Caribbean island is spending $13 million on the initiative, and that, in turn, will support the country’s first international airport, for which associated property acquisitions have been approved.
According to the Honorable Rayburn Blackmoore, Dominica’s Minister for National Security and Home Affairs, migrating from basic machine-readable passports to biometric e-passports is the “most important aspect” in improving the country’s border systems.
In a statement announcing the upgrades, Blackmoore said: “In March of 2021, we will be moving to new biometric passports in Dominica and Dominica will be the only country, except for the Bahamas to have those improved passports in the Caribbean, and that is development.”
With biometrics at the border, the Minister noted, Dominica will be able to compile watch lists and benefit from enhanced cargo and passenger data. The press release announcing the improvements also gestured toward some form of biometric-entry program in which the “e-passports will enable the garnering of incomers’ fingerprints at the border and allow for the inspection of secondary information.”
In addition to security at the border itself, biometric e-passports will inevitably help fight fraud in the region. As Jumio’s Dean Nicolls illustrated in a recent blog post, e-passports are incredibly difficult to forge in comparison to their low-tech forerunners, and that’s especially true for the biometrics-enabled documents.
August 27, 2020 – by Peter B. Counter