Ridge, Powell back extensions of biometric passport deadline

International Civil Aviation Organization

State Department Secretary Colin Powell and Homeland Security Department Secretary Tom Ridge urged Congressional lawmakers today to extend the October deadline for accepting foreign passports embedded with biometrics from visa-waiver countries by another two years.

The extension would give the 27 nations in the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) more time to produce passports with biometric identifiers, which the secretaries described as a technologically complex process. VWP countries are not dragging their feet but have found that, after 17 months, they need more time to meet the deadline, Powell and Ridge said. None of the larger countries in the waiver program will be issuing biometric passports by October, Powell said. Japan and the United Kingdom, for instance, don't expect to start until late 2005. Others may not do so until sometime in 2006, Powell said.

"It is in our interest to ensure global interoperability


  • Congress
    U.S. Capitol (Photo by M DOGAN / Shutterstock)

    Funding bill clears Congress, heads for president's desk

    The $1.3 trillion spending package passed the House of Representatives on March 22 and the Senate in the early hours of March 23. President Trump is expected to sign the bill, securing government funding for the remainder of fiscal year 2018.

  • 2018 Fed 100

    The 2018 Federal 100

    This year's Fed 100 winners show just how much committed and talented individuals can accomplish in federal IT. Read their profiles to learn more!

  • Census
    How tech can save money for 2020 census

    Trump campaign taps census question as a fund-raising tool

    A fundraising email for the Trump-Pence reelection campaign is trying to get supporters behind a controversial change to the census -- asking respondents whether or not they are U.S. citizens.

Stay Connected

FCW Update

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.