Feeds

BAA grounds Heathrow T5 fingerprinting system

Data protection forces 11th hour climbdown

Boost IT visibility and business value

BAA has been forced to suspend plans to fingerprint domestic travellers at the new Heathrow Terminal 5 after confusion over the legality of the scheme.

The suspension of the plan - based around a multi-million biometric system - comes just hours before the building opens to the public tomorrow.

The British Airport Authority (BAA) said this afternoon the scheme would be put on hold until further notice.

The Information Commissioner's Office had raised concerns with BAA that the plan could breach the Data Protection Act.

BAA sent us this statement:

Following a meeting with all relevant parties, including the Information Commissioner and the Border and Immigration Agency, the introduction of fingerprinting for domestic passengers and international passengers transferring onto domestic flights at Heathrow will be temporarily delayed. BAA will be opening Terminal 5 using a photographic identification process during this time which is already in place.

We will be working closely with the Information Commissioner and the Home Office over the next few weeks to agree the best approach going forward.

Heathrow Terminal 5 is not the first in the UK where domestic and international passengers will share a departure lounge. But it is the first UK airport where the operator wanted to fingerprint everybody in a "count them all in, count them all out" process.

The ICO has asked BAA to explain why fingerprinting is needed at all. ®

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

More from The Register

next story
Just TWO climate committee MPs contradict IPCC: The two with SCIENCE degrees
'Greenhouse effect is real, but as for the rest of it ...'
Adam Afriyie MP: Smart meters are NOT so smart
Mega-costly gas 'n' 'leccy totting-up tech not worth it - Tory MP
'Blow it up': Plods pop round for chat with Commonwealth Games tweeter
You'd better not be talking about the council's housing plans
Arrr: Freetard-bothering Digital Economy Act tied up, thrown in the hold
Ministry of Fun confirms: Yes, we're busy doing nothing
Help yourself to anyone's photos FOR FREE, suggests UK.gov
Copyright law reforms will keep m'learned friends busy
Apple smacked with privacy sueball over Location Services
Class action launched on behalf of 100 million iPhone owners
UK government officially adopts Open Document Format
Microsoft insurgency fails, earns snarky remark from UK digital services head
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.
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.
Backing up Big Data
Solving backup challenges and “protect everything from everywhere,” as we move into the era of big data management and the adoption of BYOD.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.