Fake Documents Lie, Biometrics Don’t

During a House Homeland Security Committee hearing, I, the Lead Republican on the House Foreign Affairs Committee and Chairman Emeritus of the House Homeland Security Committee, touted the importance of the Department of Homeland Security’s use of biometric technology to prevent entry to bad actors, like suspected terrorists or members of transnational criminal organizations, to our country. 

“The 9/11 Commission recommended the use of biometrics for leaving and entering the United States. I believe that technology is our friend in stopping terrorist and bad actors from entering this country.” 

 

 

 

TOP TAKEAWAYS

 

U.S. Citizens can opt-out of the entry-exit system

According to U.S. Customs and Border Protection, American citizens can opt-out of providing biometrics for the entry-exit system. Once Custom Border Protection verifies that an individual is a U.S. Citizen from their passport or review of the technology, they are excluded from biometric tracking requirements. Simply put, you can opt-out of having your picture taken.

The House of Representatives has already approved bipartisan legislation supporting biometrics last Congress

In 2018, I introduced the Biometric Identification Transnational Migration Alert Program (BITMAP) to reauthorize the successful DHS biometric program started under the Obama Administration. This technology helps Homeland Security officials identify bad actors, like terrorists, human traffickers, or transnational criminals, who use fake documents, from entering our country. This legislation passed the House overwhelming, 272-119, with support on both sides of the aisle.

Biometrics are extremely important when catching

Currently, DHS can identify individuals who pose a national security threat when they come into our Hemisphere. DHS is then able to work with its partners and establish who the individual is on a biometric basis.

Bottom line

Since 2011, BITMAP has enrolled over 460 known or suspected terrorists. People can alter, steal, borrow or purchase documents to enter our country, but their biometrics will not lie.

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