Canada to start capturing biometrics of temporary residents

Beginning in 2013, citizens from countries or territories for which Canada requires biometric information must appear in person to have their fingerprints and photograph captured when applying for a temporary visa, study permit or work permit in the country.

According to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police website, “being able to search fingerprints will assist immigration authorities in making informed admissibility decisions.”

This initiative is a part of the Temporary Resident Biometrics Project (TRBP) and is led by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC), in partnership with the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) and the RCMP.

Those required to submit biometrics will have to find Visa Application Centers (VOC) to give their fingerprints and have their photograph taken in addition to the personal information currently required as a part of this process.

Digital prints and photographs will be encrypted and sent to the RCMP to be cross-referenced against criminal, refugee claimant, deportee and temporary resident application records. If no adverse information concerning an applicant is discovered, the visa will be processed. Adverse or ambiguous information will be further analyzed by the RCMP and CIC before a final decision is made.

As reported previously in BiometricUpdate.com, Canada’s Passport Office will start issuing higher-security 10-year electronic passports, or ePassports to Canadians early next year. These ePassports, also known as biometric passports, look like a traditional passport except they contain an electronic chip encoded with a surname, given name, date of birth, place of birth and gender information, as well as a digital picture of the bearer’s face.

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