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Whose to Blame for UK Biometric Border Debacle?

Posted: November 9th, 2011 | Author:

The latest on the UK border debacle is a classic  case of “he said, she said”

UK border chief Brodie Clark quits over passport scandal with broadside against Theresa May

Brodie Clark, the senior civil servant at the heart of the scandal over relaxed passport checks, has made a direct attack on Theresa May, accusing the Home Secretary of misleading the public.

His resignation and attack on Mrs May escalates the most serious immigration row the Coalition has faced.

Over the summer, (Mrs May) secretly authorised border staff to stop checking biometric data in the passports of European arrivals at ports and airports. She says Mr Clark then defied her clear orders and extended the policy to non-Europeans.

Regardless of how this all washes out, whose at fault, and who actually takes the blame, the failure to complete biometric ePassport checks at the UK border is just bad news for biometrics at the border.

“Secure border” programs are consistently attacked  in many locations as  excessively expensive while providing minimal if any improvement in security. The  senstiive nature of  data related to these programs precludes most countries in most cases from releasing performance statistics. So, the only public relations are the fiasco stories aka the current UK border debacle feeding the fire of those with legitimate concerns about the cost benefit implications of identification programs.

Sadly, as we have seen many times in our industry, it is not the biometric or other identification technology that is at fault, but rather poorly designed, implemented, or managed ID programs that fail us.

 

 


Filed under: Airport Security, Automated Border Control, Biometrics, eIDs, ePassports | No Comments »