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Fingerprinting may be introduced at British airports from next year

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Friday, Aug 1, 2008

Passengers flying from British airports could be fingerprinted from next year. Fingerprint scanning may be introduced in an effort to increase security at UK airports.

Fingerprinting passengers may be introduced at British airports with departure lounges used by both domestic and international travellers, reports The Telegraph. The Home Office’s Border and Immigration Agency is concerned that ‘common departure lounges’ could allow an incoming international passenger to switch tickets with an accomplice on a domestic flight.

A UK Border Agency spokesman’s said: “If airports mix domestic and international passengers then we will consider requiring fingerprint checks to maintain security.” He added that the government was determined “to strengthen our borders using new technology” and that fingerprinting was already in place for people applying for visas to enter Britain.

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Airports that could be affected by the fingerprinting measures if they are introduced are London Heathrow, Gatwick and Manchester.

Passengers flying from UK airports that have common departure lounges are currently photographed as they pass through security but the Home Office feels this is no longer enough. Fingerprint scanning was introduced in the US in 2004 for travellers entering the country. From next year US authorities intend to fingerprint scan those leaving the country.

This article was posted: Friday, August 1, 2008 at 11:16 am

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