The Bush administration has required agencies to increase their capability to share among themselves biometric information on people believed to pose a threat to national security.
A presidential directive issued June 5 requires the increased compatibility of methods agencies use to collect, store and share fingerprints, face and iris recognition data and behavioral characteristics to identify and screen “known and suspected terrorists.” The directive also applies to other categories of individuals the directive said would be identified soon who may also pose a threat to national security.
The National Security Presidential Directive 59/Homeland Security Presidential Directive 24’s purpose is to create a “framework” to ensure that agencies are using mutually compatible and legal methods for sharing biometric information, the document states.
The directive also explained that although existing name-based screening approaches are beneficial, biometric technologies can improve agencies’ ability to identify and screen people believed to threaten national security. Continue reading »