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Germany to require fingerprints and biometric images for government IDs

German parliament passes EU biometric laws for passports and national IDs
Germany to require fingerprints and biometric images for government IDs

The German parliament is implementing recently enacted EU regulations to require fingerprints and biometric images on national IDs, reports Mitteldeutsche Zeitung. The new fingerprint requirement will come into effect in August 2021 and will make the previously optional element on government-issued IDs mandatory.

Individuals will be required to provide two fingerprints to be included on their government-issued national ID, which are then stored electronically on the card.

According to these new laws, effective May 2025 images for passports and national IDs have to be digitally created biometric images, and may only be submitted by approved vendors or taken at government offices.

Conventionally printed photographs will become invalid as they pose the threat of fraud through image morphing technology. This technology combines two images allowing two individuals to use the same ID.

German parliament also introduced changes to gender entries on passports and national IDs to include the letter “X” for individuals who do not wish to identify as male or female. This change is projected to be introduced as early as 2021.

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