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India setting up its own version of US terrorist biometrics database

Categories Biometrics News  |  Law Enforcement
India setting up its own version of US terrorist biometrics database

The National Investigation Agency of India (NIA) is compiling the biometric data of terrorists and their associates into a comprehensive database modeled on the U.S.’ Global Terrorism Database.

The Indian Express reports that The National Terrorism Data Fusion & Analysis Centre (NTDFAC) will collect data from a variety of sources, including the NIA’s National Automated Fingerprint Identification System (NAFIS), and the National Integrated Database on Arrested Narco-Offenders, which compiles narcotics offenders’ source of funding, available pictures and info cribbed from the internet. Combined, the various databases will allow Indian intelligence to access subjects’ histories, fingerprints, videos, pictures, social media profiles and information on affiliated terror groups. The Indian Express quotes a source who says voice samples could be added in the future.

NAFIS holds 9.2 million biometric records, and data from more than 22,000 terrorism cases is being added from the Integrated Monitoring of Terrorism system.

The initiative, inaugurated by Union Home Minister Amit Shah on January 31, also includes a facial recognition system to scan CCTV footage for the faces of suspects. At an antiterrorism conference last October, Shah called for a “ruthless” approach to fighting terrorism, and for the establishment of a system resembling the one he has now implemented.

India is dealing with several internal security concerns. The country has been dealing with fallout from allegations that it planned assassinations of Khalistani separatists on U.S. and Canadian soil. Tensions have also been on the rise between the country’s Muslims and Hindus, fueled by the Hindu nationalist movement that has grown under the conservative government of Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party.

India is scheduled to have general elections in April.

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