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Come to Britain and we will fingerprint your kids…

January 30, 2009

fingerprintLast week I mentioned the approval of the biometric passports scheme by the European Parliament, and that there were several countries that planned to fingerprint children under the age of 12 despite the legal, ethical and technical problems with this.

However, what I didn´t mention is that – surprise, surprise – Britain is one of the countries that does fingerprint kids, and indeed it has already been fingerprinting foreign children resident in Britain as young as 6. As Privacy International´s Gus Hossein argues on The Guardian´s Comment is Free website, the UK government claims that this is only bcause the EU has forced this upon them when in fact it was the UK government that forced the EU into adopting that position in the first place!

Now, as I mentioned, the European Parliament has pushed the age limit upwards, but will this make any difference to the UK Home Office? Given that the Home Office is still ´carefully considering´ its responce to the kicking it received from the European Court of Human Rights over the taking and retention of the DNA of 857,000 children, I wouldn´t bank on it.

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