U.S., Europe to Work Together on Biometrics, Chertoff Says

SHEFFIELD, England -- The United States will hold a conference later this year on fingerprint and iris scan technology to help some 27 countries meet a new deadline for issuing biometric passports, U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff said Thursday.

Twenty-seven nations -- many in the European Union -- whose citizens enjoy visa-free travel rights have been given an extra year to include in passports an integrated circuit chip capable of storing biometric information. The EU had complained they would not be able to have the technology ready by Oct. 26 this year.