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INS TO STUDY BIOMETRIC TECHNOLOGY TO IDENTIFY TRAVELERS TO UNITED STATES

 INS TO STUDY BIOMETRIC TECHNOLOGY TO IDENTIFY TRAVELERS
 TO UNITED STATES
 WASHINGTON, May 20 /PRNewswire/ -- The Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) will study the feasibility of utilizing biometric technology for identification as a means of speeding frequent travelers through ports of entry to the United States, Gene McNary, INS commissioner, announced today.
 Biometrics utilizes unique characteristics, such as fingerprints, hand geometry measurements, retinal patterns and other such physical traits to determine positive identification of individuals.
 "We are hopeful that such a system may prove valuable in determining identification of frequent international travelers to facilitate their processing into the United States, consistent with security objectives," McNary said. "As we move into the 21st century and the anticipated increase in international travel, it is vital that we look at new and automated systems for aiding in the inspection of foreign visitors. There is a great opportunity for INS to take the lead in examining the potential for such systems and in a cooperative effort among nations to move people across international boundaries."
 McNary met recently with Geoffrey Lipman, president of World Travel and Tourism Council, who expressed strong support for the proposal. The council is made up of chief executives of major corporations involved in international travel.
 Persons eligible for the program would make an application to INS, where they would be interviewed and biometric characteristics recorded for later use identifying the individual.
 When these persons arrive at a port of entry where the system is in use, they would be processed for admission to the country through an automated inspection booth, where the biometric technology would be applied to establish identity. Participants in the program would still be required to have a passport and a visa, if applicable.
 INS will look closely at the technology before determining whether to initiate a pilot program. No target date has been set for start-up, McNary said.
 -0- 5/20/92
 /CONTACT: Verne Jervis or Duke Austin, Immigration and Naturalization Service, Office of Press Information, 202-514-2648/ CO: Immigration and Naturalization Service ST: District of Columbia IN: SU:


DC -- DC019 -- 6253 05/20/92 12:46 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:May 20, 1992
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