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Heathrow airport testing opt-in big brother biometrics

Paul Miller, @futurepaul
December 6, 2006
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For every vocal privacy advocate, there are probably one hundred people who would just like to get through the lines a bit quicker at the airport, and perhaps cut down on that 3 hour pre-flight arrival time -- as long as it didn't mean compromising national security in the process. To that end, the UK's Heathrow airport is implementing an opt-in biometrics system called miSense that allows passengers to bypass lines and breeze through the check-in process if they agree to selling their souls forking over some private data do the BAA. Beyond your fingerprint data, you'll need to have held a valid passport for over six months and be subjected to some UK government background checks, but after that you'll get your fingerprints tied to your passport and be able to bypass lines at the airport with a simple swipe of the finger -- and eventually face and eye biometric scans as well. Seems to be a pretty good trade-off to us, and we like how the program is optional right now, we just hope that with UK's predilection for big brother activity, this won't become a mandatory program and get all biometric on the more paranoid privacy types who would rather not fork over such data.

[Via Fark]



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