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Katko Statement on DHS Scrapping Biometrics Expansion

May 10, 2021

Katko Statement on DHS Scrapping Biometrics Expansion

WASHINGTON, DC – Rep. John Katko (R-NY), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Homeland Security, issued the following statement on the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) withdrawing a proposed rule to expand the use of biometrics:

“Biometrics are an important tool to combat fraud and improve the government’s ability to verify an individual’s identity. Bad actors can attempt to obscure their biographic information, but they can’t change their biometrics. At this pivotal time in our homeland security mission, we should make every effort to improve visa security, not weaken it. This move by DHS sends the wrong message and is yet another example of the Biden Administration rolling back progress on border and visa security made under the last Administration.”

A September 2016 report by the DHS Office of Inspector General found that at least 858 potentially ineligible individuals had been granted U.S. citizenship because of incomplete fingerprint records. Additionally, a man who fraudulently obtained asylum and U.S. citizenship was hired by the Obama Administration to adjudicate the very immigration petitions and forms on which he repeatedly lied.