Feeds

HP to build EU's biometric ID, terror database

System designed for 'future requirements'

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The essential guide to IT transformation

A consortium headed by Hewlett-Packard is to develop Europe's 'Big Brother' system for the European Commission. Along with Steria, Mummert in Germany and Primesphere in Luxembourg, HP is to produce a "high-quality technology model" for the second generation of the Schengen Information System (SIS) II and the Visa Information System (VIS) - Europe's Justice and Home Affairs Committee envisages these two systems replacing a border control system (SIS I) with a far more pervasive one of surveillance, controls and information exchange.

Although HP announced the signing of the contract today, the European Commission tells us the deal was actually struck late last year. We've no idea whether the latest version signifies some change in the contract, or merely that HP Belgium communicates with HP global via messages in bottles. Whatever...

HP's announcement doesn't mention Big Brother, but does follow a mention of the Schengen treaty's aim to "allow free movement of persons in Europe" with... "SIS II, will provide information on wanted persons as well as stolen vehicles, ID documents and banknotes through a database accessed by national police authorities of all participating member states. Once it is fully functional in 2007, SIS II will be much more flexible than the current system and will also be able to store photographic images and fingerprints. In addition, the infrastructure of the new system will make it easier to adapt to future EU requirements."

The storage of "images and fingerprints" relates to Justice and Home Affairs' plans for biometric passports, visas and residence permits, and for an EU standard for national ID cards. The EU has gone further than the basic ICAO and US requirement standard for biometric passports by including fingerprints, and also intends all visas to be biometric (which is where VIS comes in). Residence permits are also to be biometric, and with the ID card standard on the horizon, but not yet specified, the pan-European biometric ID system is taking shape.

Add in various other bits of data sharing (vehicle databases, no-travel lists and a "restricted access terrorist database") and access (various European and national police and security services), and you've got SIS II, which HP is designing so it can grow in accordance with Justice and Home Affairs imaginative "future EU requirements."

HP tells us the system will be fully functional in 2007, and reveals that the servers it will be supplying are the singularly inappropriately-named (they're going to the European Commission, for god's sake...) Integrity Superdome. Not an expression that springs automatically to mind at the mention of Brussels, surely... ®

Related links:

HP announcement
Statewatch explains SIS II
Statewatch on biometrics and EU here and here
Security and interop issues cause EU biometric passport delays
Finger, faceprints get green light for Europe's ID standard

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

More from The Register

next story
Microsoft exits climate denier lobby group
ALEC will have to do without Redmond, it seems
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
Barnes & Noble: Swallow a Samsung Nook tablet, please ... pretty please
Novelslab finally on sale with ($199 - $20) price tag
Ballmer leaves Microsoft board to spend more time with his b-balls
From Clippy to Clippers: Hi, I see you're running an NBA team now ...
Kate Bush: Don't make me HAVE CONTACT with your iPHONE
Can't face sea of wobbling fondle implements. What happened to lighters, eh?
Video of US journalist 'beheading' pulled from social media
Yanked footage featured British-accented attacker and US journo James Foley
Amazon takes swipe at PayPal, Square with card reader for mobes
Etailer plans to undercut rivals with low transaction fee offer
Assange™: Hey world, I'M STILL HERE, ignore that Snowden guy
Press conference: ME ME ME ME ME ME ME (cont'd pg 94)
Call of Duty daddy considers launching own movie studio
Activision Blizzard might like quality control of a CoD film
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
BYOD's dark side: Data protection
An endpoint data protection solution that adds value to the user and the organization so it can protect itself from data loss as well as leverage corporate data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?