16 May 2006
Australia considers biometric identification for visas
The Australian Deparment of Immigration is said to be considering biometric testing, such as finger-printing, in an effort to tighten border security.
The Australian newspaper is reporting the governement is considering having all those who apply for an entry visa go through some manner of biometric testing.
The move to biometrics would cut down on the risk of wrongful detentions and unlawful detentions which have dominated the Australian news headlines for some time now.
The proposed biometrics scheme is said to extend across almost all visa categories.
Immigration Minister Amanda Vanstone is said to be in favour of the plan, noting the biometric data would screen out non-citizens and be shared with both Customs and the police.
Vanstone supported the introduction of a national ID card and is thought to have argued in favour of including a fingerprint biometric on the new government access smartcard.
As Immigration has started instaling biometric facial and finger-scanning devices at detention facilities across the country, more details of the biometrics scheme for visa holders will be introduced next week.