Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Biometric Data

What I do in the name of Shakespeare....

What is biometric data? In an effort to prevent identity theft, every UK Border Visa Applicant must have their biometric information taken. This involves a fingerprint scan and digital photograph to be taken at an Application Support Center operated by the Department of Homeland Security.

It all sounded like a HUGE hassle to me, but it was surprisingly quick and simple. I made an appointment at the nearest ASC office during my online visa application. Today I showed up at my scheduled time and the process began.

First, I checked in at the front desk. They told me to remove all of my jewelry, including my earrings, and checked for cell phones and cameras (which are not allowed inside the building). I then received a number: #44.

Luckily there was only one person in line, so as quickly as I sat down my number was called. They checked my paperwork and I was moved into another waiting room to wait for my fingerprint scan and picture.

The fingerprint process proved interesting as I watched my prints appear on the screen. However, I immediately gave thanks to the fact that I had hand sanitizer in the car. I couldn’t help thinking about all the unknown hands that had touched the scanning plate. I also didn’t realize they would take my picture, so I had to do a quick primping job.

I was in and out in 15 minutes from beginning to end. Great service too! Now that I am in the system I can send in all of my paperwork and get my student Visa. Let’s hope this process it speedy, as I am leaving the country September 22nd!

Guide to Giving Your Biometric Data

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