UK police to wield mobile fingerprint scanners, facial recognition up next

Surely your remember Project Lantern from back in 2006, right? If you weren't too fond of that initiative, let's just say your worst nightmare is coming true. Going forward, every police force in the UK will be equipped with mobile fingerprint scanners, which will allow the fuzz to carry out identity checks right on the street. Dubbed Project Midas, this here setup is supposed to "transform the speed of criminal investigations"while simultaneously freaking out anyone remotely concerned about personal privacy; in fairness, cops insist that fingerprints scanned via these portable devices will not be stored or added to databases, and we're told that they'll only be used " when they suspect an individual of an offense and can't establish his / her identity." The £30 million ($47.5 million) to £40 million ($63.4 million) initial phase should hit widespread deployment within 18 months, and in case you thought it was over after this, you should probably know that facial recognition in the field is the next top priority.

[Via Pocket-lint, image courtesy of SpringCard]