Washington Post reports that Rep. Jim Turner sent a letter to Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge, who wrote that terrorists who alter their fingerprints have about an even chance of slipping past U.S. border watch-list checks because the government is using a two-fingerprint system instead of one that relies on all 10 prints. He mentioned a study by researchers at Stanford University who concluded the two-finger system is no more than 53 percent effective in matching fingerprints with poor image quality against the government’s biometric terrorist watch-list. Turner said the system falls far short of keeping the country secure.
Turner accused homeland security officials of failing to be “more forthcoming” about the limitations of their approach.
I understand your desire to deploy biometric screening at our borders as quickly as possible. But more than three years after the 9/11 attacks, we have invested more than $700 million in an entry-exit system that cannot reliably do what the Department so often said it would: Use a biometric watch-list to keep known terrorists out of the country.
How about not using terrorists as an excuse for tagging the citizens?