Biometric trial results

The Government has published the results of a UK Passport Service Biometrics Enrolment Trial. The trial was set up to test the processes and record customer experience and attitude during the recording and verification of facial, iris and fingerprint biometrics. The results from the trial are intended to help inform the Government’s plans to introduce biometrics to support improved identity authentication and help prevent identity fraud.

Jul 28, 2005
By Keith Potter
L-R: PC Joe Swan, Sgt Thomas Neilson and Sgt Chris Smith

It covered:

u Testing the use of biometrics through a simulation of an application process.

u Inclusion of exception cases, eg people who may have difficulties in enrolment.

u Measurement of the process times.

u Assessment of customer perceptions and reactions.

u Testing fingerprint and iris biometrics for one-to-many identification and testing facial, iris and fingerprint biometrics for one-to-one verification.

Although the trial was set up with no attempt to compare the accuracy of the different biometric technology itself, the results do highlight success rate problems in the enrolment and verification processes that will need to be addressed. The full report can be found via

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