IBIA aims to set record straight on biometric exit
23 January 2018 14:02 GMT

The International Biometrics + Identity Association has launched a white paper exploring the benefits of a biometric exit system to US immigration security.

The IBIA report takes aim at a recent Georgetown University report that claimed the exit system was "a solution in search of a problem”, among other criticisms of the planned system.

IBIA notes in the paper that it has identified "significant flaws and omissions" in the Paper. 

For instance, the IBIA notes that the Georgetown paper’s statement that Congress has not articulated a rationale for a Biometric Exit reflects a disregard of the facts on the ground in the U.S. and around the world. Security vulnerabilities are on the rise globally and the increase in visa overstays is documented. As a sovereign nation, the responsibility of the US is to address such fundamental issues.

IBIA also writes that the Biometric Exit pilots are technically sound and the technologies are used worldwide.

"As the studies and empirical evidence described in this analysis demonstrate, biometric verification of identity is more accurate and reliable than either simple biographic verification or human face verification. As discussed in great detail in the IBIA analysis, the Paper’s citations to the NIST study makes clear that the authors cited it for incorrect conclusions. As a result, they misconstrued the 96% accuracy rate. Actual performance of modern algorithms against a gallery size equal to or slightly greater than a plane manifest is 98% to 99%".

Writing that biometric exit is essential for security and immigration, the IBIA adds that the Center’s Paper minimizes both the security and immigration threats facing the country by ignoring real facts on the ground.

"While it is true that biometrics are not perfect (that is, have a non-zero and
variable statistical error rate), nothing in life is perfect, including other security
mechanisms. The relevant issue is whether biometrics or face scans are better than
the alternatives. Compared to visual inspections and name-based alternatives,
biometrics and face scans are clearly superior."

To read the full IBIA paper, click here.