Biometric ID cards are still fundamental, but fingerprint smart cards are no exception

Biometric National Identity Card Becomes Most Read News of the Week Biometric updates, an Augentique contract in Cameroon and a Thales contract in Bahrain. Government spending and biometric contracts were even more in the news this week, with Malawi and Australia securing funding and Garsu Pasaulis winning a Zimbabwe border biometrics contract. Fingerprint biometrics continues to make headlines, with Fingerprint Cards, Idex Biometrics and Zwipe striking smart card deals, and Innovatrics and Omnigarde reporting NIST benchmark results.

Top biometric news this week

Augentic has won a 15-year contract to produce Cameroon's biometric national identity cards in a two-phase project with total funding allocated for the project of US$75 million. Narrated by Augentic CEO Labinot Carreti Biometric updates In an exclusive interview, card development and testing, sample production and infrastructure construction will be carried out simultaneously in the next step.

Thales has won a contract to upgrade Bahrain’s identity card system, including the card’s biometric capabilities, in line with the national digital identity strategy. The company will overhaul the country's ID card printing system to improve its biometric and security capabilities while leveraging modern technology to build long-term savings.

Malawi is receiving technical support and funding from the United Nations Development Programme, the European Union and Irish Aid to build a digital identity system to facilitate access to public services, especially for traditionally underserved groups. Malawi’s inclusive digital transformation measures will be based on the country’s national registration and identification system.

Australia has allocated A$288 million to support the launch of its national digital identity system, and the government is currently guiding legislation for the system through parliament. Upgrades to myGovID, stronger encryption and pilots with the private sector are all on the agenda. Meanwhile, the Northern Territory has allocated funds to launch mobile driving licenses, with trials expected to begin in 2025.

Belgium has launched a national digital identity wallet and is one of the first countries to achieve the goal of eIDAS 2.0. is designed to store official documents, simplify administrative processes and provide public services. Belgians can register using their identity card, eID or itme.

As Europe grapples with implementing digital identity, observers are weighing how to get it right. As Hungary begins rolling out its digital IDs, Spherical Cow head Heather Flanagan reviews the architectural reference framework for EUDI wallets and Polish IT security experts urge cryptographic verification.

Zimbabwe is launching automated border controls using biometric technology provided by Garsu Pasaulis. Digital gates and kiosks are designed to make the immigration process contactless and improve coordination between government agencies. Solomon Islands is also modernizing its border management system with online visa applications and other enhancements.

Biometric smart cards continue to slowly grow in payment and access control applications. Fingerprint Cards sensors and software are powering fingerprint-enabled care cards, produced in partnership with Tag Systems and Money Carer. Idex Biometrics has signed up an unnamed but apparently innovative challenger bank, also unnamed, in the South Asian country. Zwipe has partnered with PCB & Security Europe SL to provide biometric access cards to customers in Spain and Portugal.

Worldcoin has been working hard to counter skepticism about its biometric human proof project with security updates and promotions, the latest being the introduction of multi-party computation for biometric data protection as open source software. The move could put Worldcoin's open-source code in competition with developers that provide multi-party computing for biometrics, such as Anonymbit, Keyless, authID and Youverse. Worldcoin itself appears to have a direct competitor on Humanity Protocol, but in the meantime its WLD token has been approved for trading on Bursa Malaysia and its price has increased in recent trading.

Innovatrics and Omnigarde both submitted algorithms to NIST's MINEX III fingerprint template evaluation this month, and the former topped the template generator effectiveness list and topped the template matching results. Omnigarde also achieved leading supplier results in both categories.

SDxCentral spoke with Ping Identity founder and CEO Andre Durand about the rapid merger between his company and ForgeRock following Thoma Bravo's acquisition. He describes the C-suite changes and customer issues brought about by the biggest shift in the corporate identity market in recent years, and what's next.

If you find interviews, podcasts, or any other content we should share with those in the biometric and digital identity community, either in the comments below or on social media, please let us know.

Article topic

Biometrics | Biometrics | Digital ID Card | Digital Identity | Week in Review

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