Natural Security Alliance has participated to the inquiry on the current and future challenges raised by biometric data and technologies launched by the Science and Technology Committee of the Parliament of the UK. In its report addressed to the Committee, the Natural Security Alliance expresses its opinion and recommendations on the key challenges, during whole lifecycle, facing both Government and industry in developing, implementing and regulating new technologies that rely on biometric data.
Biometrics has changed considerably in recent years as technology has continued to evolve. The most recent development was announced a few months ago, with the launch of a new smartphones embedding biometric technology. New technologies have created new usages, raising issues and challenges that both industry and government must handle, either immediately or in the near future, especially with regard to privacy and data protection. In order to support and not restrict technological development while avoiding unwanted creep of any kind, solutions need to be quickly defined.
The approach of the Alliance to avoid unwanted creep without deterring innovation is to take into consideration privacy issues at each step of the lifecycle of the technology. First of all, biometric technology should be developed on an open standard in order to ensure trust and reliability. Then, the compliance with data protection law requires implementing the concept of Privacy-by-design by building a technology which mitigates privacy risks. In addition, the products have to be certified by trusted authorities to guarantee consumers that they correctly designed them according to the guidelines. Finally, in order to avoid misuse of the products afterwards, implementers should agree to a code of conduct.
The Position paper for the Science and Technology Committee (House of Commons) : Opinion and recommendations on challenges raised by biometric developments is available in the resource centrer.