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Starting today, Singapore will begin recording iris-scans of residents

The computerized iris scan was patented in 1994. (Source: US Patent & Trademark Office)
The computerized iris scan was patented in 1994. (Source: US Patent & Trademark Office)
Beginning January 1, Singapore will begin requiring the iris-scans of its residents. Singapore already collects photographic and fingerprint data of its residents, but the addition of iris scans poses the greatest potential risk to privacy.

Happy new year! Please face the camera and hold still. Starting today, January 1, Singapore will begin recording iris scans of both its citizens and permanent residents to improve security and "convenient registration services", according to the Ministry of Home Affairs.

The ministry already collects photographs and fingerprints, but wants to collect iris maps as an additional identifier. Starting January first, citizens and permanent residents wanted to re-register or get a new ID card or passport will have their irises scanned. To help deal with the massive administrative task of scanning Singapore's 3.8 million residents, the government has bestowed the ability to register upon specific SingPost outlets.

The government claims that the addition of iris scans will make Singapore more safe and convenient, citing that some people experienced difficulty with fingerprint scanners at automated immigration gates at airports. However, privacy and civil liberty advocates have concern about the use of iris scanners, as they allow automated camera tracking of people from distances up to 40 feet.

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2017 01 > Starting today, Singapore will begin recording iris-scans of residents
Douglas Black, 2017-01- 1 (Update: 2017-01- 1)
Douglas Black
Douglas Black - News Editor
I am a university Lecturer and researcher in English writing, but I like to keep myself busy. Between weightlifting, MMA, and SCUBA diving, one of my life-long interests has always been computers. I used Macs until about 17 years ago when I switched to PCs because of an interest in games, but I'm still interested in top quality laptops that push the design envelope.