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November 11, 07

NEWS / Ten Fingerprints to be Scanned During Visa Application Process

Beginning November 6, 2007, all U.S. diplomatic missions in Russia will scan ten fingerprints from every visa applicant. This new biometric standard represents a technology upgrade that is being instituted at U.S. embassies around the world.

U.S. law has required biometric collection since 2002, and fingerprints collected at U.S. embassies and consulates overseas are checked against millions of names in national databases in the United States. American ports of entry also check biometrics to verify that the person traveling with the visa is the same person who was issued the visa.

More than 120 U.S. consulates around the world already use the ten-fingerprint system, and all 220 U.S. embassies and consulates are scheduled to implement the system before January 1, 2008.

In 2006, the U.S. Embassy in Moscow and U.S. Consulates in St. Petersburg, Yekaterinburg and Vladivostok issued a total of 126,000 nonimmigrant visas to Russian citizens, and anticipate this number will rise to approximately 145,000 in 2007.

For more information on the latest biometric requirements for U.S. visa applicants ó (http://travel.state.gov/visa/immigrants/info/info_1336.html).).

Tags: visa application,


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