Defense reveals biometrics plan

By 2010, the Defense Department will use biometrics in its classified and unclassified systems to improve physical and cybersecurity, according to a memorandum released by the agency's Biometrics Management Office.

The Defense Department might require military, civilian and contractor personnel to provide biometric identifiers, such as fingerprints and iris scans, to enter buildings or gain access to data.

"This is an important step toward establishing a single biometric system across the DoD enterprise," said Linda Dean, director of the Biometrics Management Office.

The Aug. 25 memo, signed by deputy secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz, urges the office to develop a scalable biometrics component of the Global Information Grid, the department's worldwide information infrastructure. It also called for development of standards, interoperability tools, testing frameworks, and product validations to help defense agencies use biometric technology.

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