EU votes to approve massive biometrics tracking database

biometrics tracking database

The European Parliament voted in favor of a massive database to unify and track biometrics data of EU and non-EU citizens, as part of approved Interoperability Legislation.

The new database will be called the Common Identity Repository (CIR) and will consist of records of more than 350 million people. The new rules and database will better integrate and connect data from multiple law enforcement, border-control and migration management systems.

“This will facilitate the tasks of border guards, migration officers, police officers and judicial authorities by providing them with more systematic and faster access to various EU security and border-control information systems,” The European Parliament said in a press release last week.

The CIR system will include a new European search portal, to allow for faster more efficient searches from one place instead of from multiple systems.

CIR will also include a Shared biometric matching service to cross-match fingerprints and facial images across multiple systems.

A third element, Common identity repository, will contain biographical data (e.g., birth dates, passport numbers) and will be used for more reliable identification of individuals.

Finally, CIR will detect when the same person is trying to use multiple identities across different systems.

To help alleviate privacy concerns, the European Parliament also added “proper safeguards will be in place to protect fundamental rights and access to data.”

You can read more about the CIR system in a PDF titled ‘EU Interoperability framework for border management systems’ published in June of last year.