The Singaporean government is getting ready to add iris scanning to its biometric border screening arsenal. As Channel News Asia reports, the move comes quickly in the wake of parliamentary approval of new legislation designed to strengthen the country’s Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA).
Currently, the ICA collects collects the fingerprints of travelers passing through its border checkpoints, in addition to photographing their faces. Starting next year, it will also collect iris biometrics at its land and sea checkpoints.
Speaking to media, Senior Minister of State for Home Affairs Desmond Lee suggested that travelers will undergo the scans automatically and passively, which will allow authorities to bolster security while speeding up processing times at the border checkpoints. He also emphasized that all iris data will be encrypted and stored in databases “protected by physical and software measures in line with international security standards.”
The measure complements another border screening initiative announced earlier this year, when Singaporean authorities agreed to partner with the US Customs and Border Protection agency’s Global Entry program, which involves biometric security screening aimed at improving wait times and security at airports.
Source: Channel News Asia
November 11, 2016 – by Alex Perala