Feeds

French struggle to get US visas

War on Terror keeps Cheese-eating surrender monkeys at bay

Security for virtualized datacentres

The US Embassy in Paris is struggling to deal with a huge increase in demand for visas because the French government has missed Bush's deadline for biometric passports.

From last October the US government requires all newly-issued French passports to contain biometric data. Unfortunately, the French government got involved in an old-school fight with unions over who should supply the new passports and the deadline was missed. As a result any French person with a new passport wishing to visit the US needs a visa. The US embassy in Paris has received 24,000 visa applications in the five months since October - it usually deals with about 8,000 applications in a year.

A spokeswoman for the US Embassy in Paris told the Reg: "There's been huge demand but we are managing to cope now. We are doing up to 700 interviews a day and we've juggled staff around and extended the hours. At one stage people were having to wait months for interviews, but that's down to a couple of days now."

She said the embassy was moving to only accepting online applications which should speed the process further.

French tour operators claim bookings are down as much as 30 per cent because of the problem and are demanding compensation for lost business.

More details from The Times here.

Passports have contained digital pictures in the UK since 2003 and government says it is on track to include a chip by this autumn. ®

Business security measures using SSL

More from The Register

next story
JINGS! Microsoft Bing called Scots indyref RIGHT!
Redmond sporran metrics get one in the ten ring
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
Murdoch to Europe: Inflict MORE PAIN on Google, please
'Platform for piracy' must be punished, or it'll kill us in FIVE YEARS
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
Sony says year's losses will be FOUR TIMES DEEPER than thought
Losses of more than $2 BILLION loom over troubled Japanese corp
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
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?
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.