Defense looks for biometric guidelines

DOD Biometrics Management Office Web site

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"Who goes there?"

The Defense Department is developing a directive to instruct its agencies in the future use of biometric technologies.

Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz late last month issued a memorandum that said biometrics will be a key component to Defense information assurance and access control.

"By 2010, biometrics will be used to an optimal extent in both classified and unclassified environments to improve security for logical and physical access control," the memo states. "Accordingly, the DOD may require its military and civilian personnel, contractors, and other persons as necessary to provide biometrics. In some instances, providing a biometric may be a condition of employment."

The DOD Biometrics Management Office will lead the charge for the department, ensuring that best practices and standards are in place before biometrics are widely used. Once the DOD component offices have determined how biometrics can best be used in their individual offices, the management office will put together a biometrics technology directive and implement instruction.

The memo did not say when that directive is expected.

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