back to article UKBA to exchange fingerprints with US

The UK Border Agency plans to start exchanging fingerprint data with the US, Canada and Australia in the near future The organisation, which gained full executive agency status on 1 April 2009, says in a business plan issued on the same day that that it plans to work with the USA, Canada and Australia to "introduce a system of …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Notice how it's always the Anglo Saxon world that seems to spear head these things...

  2. Sillyfellow

    also notice

    how they talk about pushing UK ID cards harder and harder. bit by bit forcing everyone to have one (or they can't travel or renew documents, or perhaps buy alcohol.. etc etc.) so technically you may not be *required* to have an ID card just to be in this country (yet, unless you're a foreigner), but soon there will be too many things you cant do without one, thereby forcing you to have one anyway. dirty sneaky rotten untrustworthy government.

    papers please citizen !

    just because police and officials are (usually) polite, doesn't mean this is not a police state, because it is. i should know, i am originally from Zimbabwe under the thumb of mugabe. at this stage i would say that the UK is far worse when it comes to freedom and rights. because of the technology, equipment and number of tazer armed police. at least in zimbabwe they were/are open about their disgusting suppressive behaviour. over here they lie and lie and cheat and make up rules as they go along to try and trick people into thinking that what they are doing is acceptable behaviour. it is not.

    just look at how the police actions in the run-up to, and during the demonstrations, were plainly to discourage any disgruntled people from attempting to be heard. and where not discouraged, then 'inconvenienced' (more like persecuted) as much as possible.

    .. hang on... knock knock... hello... bzzzzztttttt... bzzzzztttttt... seeya!

  3. General A. Annoying

    That has GOT to be...

    the best April Fool's Joke ever, surely.

    "The organisation, which gained full executive agency status on 1 April 2009"

  4. General A. Annoying
    Thumb Down

    And another rhing

    UKBA to exchange fingerprints with US

    Is that exchange as in "we'll give you ours if you give us yours"

    or (the , let's face it, more likely)

    "here's ours"

    Thumb down, cos that's what we'll all have to do shortly if this shower of fuckers get their way.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Is this not in contravention on European law where we have to explicitly agree to data being transferred out of the EU control???

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    It also means they can get their hands (ahem) on fingerprints of UK nationals who travel to the US.

  7. Slaytanic

    For the Sheeple

    I think I'd rather that people who do run into problems with the law have their details updated with their passport information than subject everyone in this dragnet. Is that really too hard to ask for? I understand the passport information and and a criminal records are kept in separate databases, but in this case, wouldn't it just be a matter of the criminal database forwarding data to the passport data base?

    The whole point of this is that I believe this to be an invasion of privacy for me to give up my finger prints just so I can enter a country. I firmly believe that you take finger prints from people who are under strong suspicion of having committed crime, or have committed a crime, and not just for believing one MAY commit a crime. This finger print harvesting is disgusting and is just another way of IDing us like heard animals.

    Don't forget to say "MOO" or "BAA-BAA" (your preference) when they take your print to cross a boarder requiring this

  8. Anonymous Coward


    So now if you happen to be completely innocent of anything but the police decide to take your fingerprints and retain them (if, for example, they suspect you of a crime of which you are subsequently exonerated), those prints can then end up in the US. You can then be accused of god knows what in the US, and extradited without our transatlantic cousins having to present any eveidence of any wrongdoing, as per our current half-ratified extradition treaty. I may be extrapolating things a little far, but this sounds like we're opening the door to some serious potential miscarriages of justice...

  9. Dan

    Oh FFS

    So far I have managed to prevent the UK gov getting their grubby little mittens on my prints. However, I have been to the US, so they've got my prints from when I landed and wasn't a merkin. Does this now mean the UK gov will also have my prints?

    If you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear. That being the case, you can now post on the web a photograph of your 8-year-old, together with their name, school, time they walk home, route, and favourite sweets. No?

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Fingerprints of innocent people

    How do you know their innocent and therefore entitled not to have their detailed travel plans spread around the world?..... Ah yes, they don't, not until AFTER they've handed the fingerprints to everyone and got a 'negative' back for all the checks.

    In other words, she's planning to send lists of people entering and exiting the UK to foreign powers with some sort of noddy 'I promise not to do anything doubleplusungood with the data' contract.

    UK Borders agency is of course Jacqui Smiths. Why am I not surprised? She's turning the UK into one giant prison with her as the Commandant.

    How many companies have set up in the UK since she turned it into a prison camp? How many have left? I bet company after company has closed their UK operations, and I bet the endless prison camp mentality she induces on the UK is the cause.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    reliable prints?

    i'm sure i heard recently that fingerprints were not actually that accurate after all, and no, i have no sources. you'd think there would be better things to do with the money though..

  12. Chris
    Dead Vulture


    "It says that between April and December 2008, the e-Borders system produced more than 10,000 alerts on passengers travelling internationally, leading to more than 920 arrests."

    So, 1 in 10 of alerts are arrested, but how many are actually released without charge? i.e. false positives. Come on El Reg, gives us the full details.

  13. Anonymous Coward

    Ello Ello

    Is it just me or the thoughts of Commandant Smith conjures up images of Helga from Ello Ello!?

    No... Just Me!?

    Mines the one with a copy of UK GOLD tv listings in the pocket.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What's the Point of Protesting?

    Obama, Bush, Cameron, Brown- they are all the same when it comes to surveillance. They may say nice little platitudes about liberty, privacy and freedom, but they are all probably at best indifferent. Protesting and the media doesn't seem to make much difference, so I suggest we get on with our lives (as much as they are under the glare of CCTV) and just ignore governments.

  15. Buzzby

    Nothing to hide, nothing to fear.

    Tell that to John Stalker then!

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @For the Sheeple

    Sending the details of villains around to other countries is what Interpol does ALREADY. So yes it is easier. It's how it's done now.

    So if there's a 'data protection' problem, it means she's planning on doing the reverse and sending the data around for checking to foreign powers.

    Guido from order-order enters the USA on a work visa say, the info goes to the Home Office for checking and can be flagged by Jacqui. I find it even very creepy that that woman's dept would receive travel details of people she has no business with in a country they have no details with.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    UK visa applications are outsourced... an American company - including the aquisition of biometric data. So, the Yanks have had access to all biometrics for UK visa applicants for some time.

  18. night troll


    920 arrests out of 10,000 alerts, less than 1%. Not very acurate is it?

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Setting a precident

    If your fingerprints are on the police system then you have come into contact with the law so may well be a wrong un. That being the case then it make sense to share this data with our allies. Except the police are feeding every possible fingerprint into their computer. Every station has a northrop grumman finger print scaanner. This takes very good prints of all your fingers and your hands.

    I get the impression that the police arrest people just to feed more fingerprints and DNA into their database, oh and to hit you with an £80 fine for swearing at them.

    thumb print icon.

  20. Pat

    @reliable prints? by AC - Posted 3rd April 15:04

    Perhaps you were thinking of the Shirley McKie case?

    If so, this link to the story may be useful, and more detail can be found through the other URLs on this web page:

    Here is an extract from that news item for those who can't be bothered to link (I find especially disquieting 'the obdurate and arrogant stance' of officials) :

    <Quote> The MacKay report gives a detailed account of how the misidentification of her fingerprint occurred.

    Mr MacKay said "institutional arrogance" in the fingerprint service had led to a criminal course of action.

    The report also states: "Clearly the errors were capable of admission at various stages in the process with minimal impact on those making them.

    "The police service has a culture of openness, honesty and integrity and in such situations, while I believe there would have been frustration by management, there would have been no recriminations in a mistake being made.

    "It is the obdurate and arrogant stance which prevailed through the chain of events contributing in the conviction of David Asbury and the prosecution of Shirley McKie which transferred both misidentifications from an error status to a criminal action with dire consequences." </Quote>

  21. Matt Newton

    @ ermmm

    That'd be 9.2%.

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