Hungarian government proposes storing biometric data of citizens

Hungary’s Interior Ministry proposed a new bill last week that creates an authority to oversee the storing of facial data of citizens based on photos from their identification documents, according to a report by Budapest Business Journal. The proposal for the bill states that the Hungarian government would be able to provide this biometric information to Hungarian law enforcement authorities, such as police and intelligence services, on a request basis. Additionally, the authority would store encoded profiles that include the

OPM discovers 5.6 M fingerprints compromised in previous cyberattacks

The Office of Personnel Management reported that it has discovered that 5.6 million individual’s fingerprints were stolen as part of the massive cybersecurity breaches the agency disclosed a few months ago, according to a report by the Washington Post. OPM officials had initially estimated that the cyberattacks resulted in in the theft of 1.1 million people’s fingerprints when it first disclosed the information in the summer. Meanwhile, the total number of affected people — which includes the more than 21

FBI dramatically expanding biometrics programs: EFF

The FBI has expanded its biometrics programs with two major developments that will reportedly impact Americans on a day to day level more than any other biometrics initiative the national law enforcement agency has previously implemented, according to a report by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF). The first change, which the FBI revealed quietly earlier this year in a Privacy Impact Assessment (PIA), is the consolidation of civil and criminal fingerprints into a single searchable database. As such, all fingerprints

FRA to hold meeting to discuss EU biometrics smart borders project

European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) announced that about 20 industry experts will meet on September 25 to discuss the European Agency for Large-Scale IT Systems’ (eu-LISA) pilot project on the EU’s smart borders system. The move comes a few weeks after the FRA conducted a survey during the summer regarding the European Agency for Large-Scale IT Systems’ (eu-LISA) pilot project on the EU’s smart borders package. At the meeting, the experts will discuss the interview questions that will

Australia’s planned use of facial recognition raises privacy issues

The Australian government’s plans to further its use of facial recognition as part of its counter-terrorism efforts is raising concerns over privacy and how the technology will be used in everyday policing, according to a report by The Conversation. Last week, Michael Keenan, the minister for justice and the minister assisting the prime minister on counter-terrorism, announced details regarding the A$18.5 million (USD$13.3 million) National Facial Biometric Matching Capability. The capability will grant Commonwealth agencies and state law enforcement the

Australian government to invest $18.5m on national facial recognition system

The Australian federal government will invest $18.5 million in a new law enforcement facial recognition system called the National Facial Biometric Matching Capability, according to a report by Computerworld. The move comes a couple weeks after it was revealed that the Australian government is expected to roll out a new biometric system next year that will allow law enforcement agencies to share facial images amongst themselves. The new facial recognition system will allow government agencies to match images of unidentified

NovaTeqni to develop biometrics solution for Malawi tobacco farming industry

Biometrics and secure payment technologies firm NovaTeqni Corporation announced that it has won a contract to develop, supply and maintain an advanced biometrics enabled system for the Southeast African country of Malawi’s tobacco farming industry. The “Farmers Registration and Administration System” contract has been approved by all stakeholders, including the relevant Malawi government department as well as the international companies that buy from domestic farmers. In the past, NovaTeqni has successfully developed and commercialized many biometrics based products with a

Santa Monica police spend $60k annually on fingerprinting service

Police departments across California are using Live Scan, the state Department of Justice’s (DOJ) national electronic fingerprint database, when “booking” suspects into custody and performing employee criminal background checks, according to a report by the Santa Monica Lookout. The fingerprint technology scans millions of prints annually and transmits criminal histories of suspects to agencies within hours, which is significantly faster than the days or weeks it took just a few decades ago Santa Monica Police Department is one of more

Leicestershire Police expand use of face recognition technology

Police in Leicestershire, UK are now using facial recognition hardware that scans the characteristics of a known offender or suspect’s face and matches them against facial images stored in databases available to law enforcement, according to a report by Leicester Mercury. The move comes a few months after Leicestershire Police tested the facial recognition technology at the Download rock festival, which successfully led to reducing crime to a three-year low with 60 offences reported to the police. Leicestershire’s Chief Constable

Nigeria works to harmonise biometric data

Nigeria’s National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) said it had begun collaborating with other federal agencies in the issuance of National Identification Number (NIN) to create a strong national database, according to a report by Business Day. In an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria, NIMC director-general Chris Onyemenam said that the collaboration process is in its advanced stages, with several collaborating agencies being named. These agencies include Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), Federal Inland