UK Home Office issues RFI for hundreds of mobile fingerprint scanners

UK Home Office issues RFI for hundreds of mobile fingerprint scanners

The UK’s Home Office Biometrics Program has issued an RFI (request for information) to begin the procurement process for 200 to 300 fingerprint scanners to support its MobileID capability.

MobileID provides a gateway into the UK’s IDENT1 fingerprint database and IABS immigration database through a fingerprint scanner and an Android device. The devices are expected to be kept in police vehicles by the Nottinghamshire Police and Northamptonshire Police, and used to return matches to guide interactions in the field, rather than requiring officers to take people accused of providing a false identity into custody to verify their identity using the LIVESCAN system. If the scanners chosen are different from those currently used by Nottinghamshire Police, the supplier will also be required to provide an API to the integrate it with the existing frontline workflow software application.

Scanners can be connected to devices by cables or Bluetooth, and must be a minimum FAP30 FBI-certified, as well as portable, robust, and capture a minimum of 500 pixels per inch. The scanners port type should be noted, as Nottinghamshire Police use two different models of phones, one with a micro USB port and the other with USB C.

The RFI also asks for details on device cases, supplier market share, and relevant certifications such as ISO 9001. Potential suppliers are also asked if other UK police use their scanners for MobileID, with Crossmatch mentioned as a manufacturer of suitable scanners, how devices can be future-proofed, and the expected cost for 250 units, among eight questions.

The East Midlands Strategic Commercial Unit (EMSCU) supplies the two police departments, and issued the RFI to assess supplier responses and inform future decision-making.

The deadline for questions in April 1, and the deadline for responses is April 3. Assuming the business case is approved, the procurement is expected to be completed in May or June of this year.

West Yorkshire Police trialed 250 mobile fingerprint scanners from Airwave Solutions and Integrated Biometrics for the same use case last year, and Home Office said at the time it expected 20 police forces to have the devices by the end of 2018.

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