January 23, 2011

Iris Scans Coming To Mexican Identity Cards

Mexico will become the first country to using start iris scans for identity cards on Monday.

"The legal, technical and financial conditions are ready to start the process of issuing this identity document," Felipe Zamora, responsible for legal affairs at the Mexican Interior Ministry, told journalists Thursday.

Zamora said that the documents will be 99 percent reliable.  They will include an eye's image as well as fingerprints, a photo and signature.

Critics like the National Human Rights Commission have slammed the system, expressing concern that compiling personal data could violate individual rights.

The move will be gradually introduced, with about 28 million minors taking part in a first two-year stage, due to the $25 million it will cost.

The cards are due out for adults in 2013.

Iris recognition is increasingly used in airports, controlling access to restricted areas, and prisoner booking and release.