Motorola Civil Biometrics Solution Helps Protect Belgium's Borders

SCHAUMBURG, Ill. -- Motorola, Inc. announced that the Belgium Ministry of the Interior is now providing Belgium's citizens with vastly improved protection and better refugee tracking, as a result of an upgraded Motorola Printrak Biometric Identification Solution (BIS).

Motorola is a leading provider of Mission Critical communications solutions, including civil biometrics solutions and Automated Fingerprint Identification Systems (AFIS) to help public safety agencies like the Belgium Ministry of Interior track and accurately identify individuals. Motorola is one of the world's leading biometric companies, with solutions in more than 37 countries.

The Belgium Ministry of the Interior is responsible for processing all asylum seekers who enter Belgium. When a person applies for asylum, Ministry personnel must determine whether the person has previously applied for asylum in Belgium, possibly under another name. In addition, Ministry personnel need to know if the person has applied for asylum in another European Union country.

It is important that the identities of all asylum seekers be positively verified, and that Ministry information systems can ensure that asylum seekers do not use false identities or multiple identities. This not only protects the public from security threats, but also saves the government money, since only properly qualified asylum seekers are eligible for Belgian immigration services. Asylum seekers without proper qualifications can be deported.

According to System Managers Jan Moerman and Rita Tuerlinckx, "Our ability to identify asylum seekers has been vastly improved by the upgrade to the Motorola Printrak Biometric Identification Solution. The citizens of Belgium now enjoy one of the most comprehensive refugee solutions available in Europe."

While most asylum seekers are properly entitled to services, the ministry and Motorola technology have determined that one asylum seeker in seven can be found in an asylum fingerprint database in Belgium or elsewhere in Europe.

This most recent upgrade is the second upgrade of the original system. The upgrade from the previous Motorola system to the Motorola Printrak Biometric Identification Solution (BIS) was successfully deployed on schedule and within four months of contract signature. It has been operational since January of 2005.

In addition to providing upgraded technology and more rapid responses, the new system provides Belgium with other significant improvements to the previous system, including secure web access, which allows authorized employees to perform fingerprint comparisons and retrievals over the internet. An interface to the Eurodac system, a multi-national European automated fingerprint identification system for the fingerprint comparison of asylum applicants and illegal immigrants who may have already been processed by other countries, also is available. This is one of several Eurodac interfaces deployed by Motorola at its European AFIS sites.

"It is rewarding to see Belgium's citizens benefit from Motorola's advances in the field of civil biometrics," said Darrin J. Reilly, Motorola Communications and Electronics, Inc. Vice President and General Manager, Biometrics Business Unit. "Motorola is one of the world's leading biometric companies and we are pleased by Belgium's continued use of our technology."

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