Canada set to expand biometric entry program
06 June 2018 15:56 GMT

Canada’s Ministry of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship will soon require biometric data from people from Europe, the Middle East and Africa coming to Canada to visit, work, study or immigrate.

From July 31, 2018, applicants from Europe, the Middle East, and Africa submitting an application to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) will be required to provide certain information that includes fingerprints and a photo. U.S. citizens are exempted.

Later on from December 31, 2018, the biometrics program will expand further to include applicants from Asia, Asia Pacific, and the Americas. Canada currently collects biometrics from refugee claimants and refugee resettlement applicants from 30 countries.

Immigration Minister Ahmed Hussen has said the expansion of the program from 30 countries to 150 countries will strengthen the border and immigration systems with the ability to quickly and accurately establish a traveler's identity. This will be accomplished using a biometric collection service network and automated fingerprint verification at ports of entry rolled out during 2018 and 2019.

Hussen added, “A key feature of biometrics expansion is that temporary residents will only have to provide their biometrics once every 10 years.”