MUMBAI: The US department of homeland security (DHS) has withdrawn a rule proposed by the earlier Trump administration, that would have expanded the scope for collecting biometrics by removing age restrictions; requiring submission of biometrics for every applicant, sponsor, beneficiary, or other individual filing for or associated with any immigration or naturalization (citizenship) benefit or request unless this requirement was specifically waived or exempt.
The proposed rule had also authorised use of additional types of biometric modalities such as palm prints, iris scans, voice recognition and in certain instances DNS. The proposal which also enabled collection of biometrics from minors had come under a lot of flak.
DHS’s withdrawal of this proposed rule is consistent with President Joe Biden’s executive order – Resorting Faith in Our Legal Immigration Systems and Strengthening Integration and Inclusion Efforts for New Americans. It is aimed at reducing barriers and burdens in the immigration system.
However, DHS will continue to require submission of biometrics where appropriate and it remains committed to national security, identity management, fraud prevention and program integrity, states an official release.