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Thailand’s Immigration Biometrics Technology Stopping Fake Passport Users

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In July, the Immigration Bureau will roll out a biometric identification system at immigration checkpoints nationwide

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BANGKOK – Thailand’s Immigration Bureau announced the arrest of 8 foreigners using altered passports after biometrics technology flagged mismatches.

Pol Lt Gen Sompong Chingduang said that eight foreigners were apprehended from Wednesday to Friday.

On Wednesday, four Iranians were detained for using altered Greek passports for traveling to the UK for asylum.

The following day, three Palestine women were found using a Swedish-issued passport to seek asylum in a third country. On Friday, a 31-year-old Nigerian man was arrested for using a fake South Africa passport.

Biometrics was used to identify the false data, Pol Lt Gen Sompong said.

In July, the Immigration Bureau will roll out a biometric identification system at immigration checkpoints nationwide. The bureau invested 2.16 billion baht for the system, which can identify a person by matching fingerprints and faces.

The technology is based on a system created by Dermalog, the largest German biometrics manufacturer.

About 2,000 biometric scanners were installed in 170 immigration checkpoints. The automated biometric identification system help identify fake passports and those who are blacklisted.

Thailand is the fifth country in Southeast Asia to implement the system after Singapore, Malaysia, Cambodia and Brunei.