DHS Begins Collecting Prints From International Visitors

The Department of Homeland Security is now collecting fingerprints from international visitors arriving at Washington Dulles. The change is part of the department's upgrade from two- to 10-fingerprint collection to enhance security and fingerprint matching accuracy. Nine other airports will begin 10-fingerprint collection during the next few months, including Atlanta Hartsfield, Chicago O'Hare and New York Kennedy.Under the expanded screening, officers collect prints from all non-U.S. citizens between the ages of 14 and 79 when they apply for visas or arrive at U.S. ports of entry, with some exceptions. The department's US-VISIT program then checks this data against a joint FBI/DHS watch list of criminals, immigration violators and known or suspected terrorists. The 278 remaining ports will begin this process by the end of 2008. (DB)

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