By cross checking biometric data obtained with new biometric visa applications with police databases the UK Visas Agency has been able to identify and help detain wanted criminals in other countries, according to a Computing.com article.
While there are some snags due to partial prints and poor quality prints in old police databases, within the first two months of the project, a number of suspects and criminals have been apprehended. Due to much of the visa applications coming from visa application centers located in other countries, the UK Visa Agency notifies law enforcement in the suspect’s home country of the criminal act.
In addition to using the information to help apprehend wanted criminals, the agency is also using the information as both a screener to keep those with long criminal histories from getting visas and a way to lure wanted criminals into traps to be apprehended at borders.
While data sharing and cross matching of databases is fairly common in law enforcement, some security experts believe that the new program should be thoroughly tested to see how necessary and productive it is.
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