Neuilly-sur-Seine, Thursday 4th July 2013 – Thales, in partnership with Orange Business
Services, has been awarded a contract to provide through-life support for the biometric data
acquisition system for French passports. This new civil biometrics programme in France
further strengthens Thales's leadership in the French identity management market.
France's biometric acquisition system currently comprises around 4,000 biometric data
acquisition devices, located at local and regional government offices in metropolitan France
and the country's overseas departments and collectivities. These devices are used to capture
digital fingerprints, take photographs and record the personal details of applicants for French
passports. Through-life support of the system must take account of the dual imperatives of
availability and quality of service.
Thales will also develop a modular, scalable biometric data acquisition solution for ANTS. The
new system will be device-agnostic to ensure interoperability with any equipment provided by
any supplier, making it possible to deploy the highest-performance biometric, digitisation and
security solutions available at any given time without needing to redesign or upgrade the
overall data acquisition solution. ANTS and Thales are also developing a highly intuitive
interface for the new solution to make it quick and easy for users to familiarise themselves with
the local processing application.
These devices will be based on Orange Business Services’ scalable infrastructure, the only
actor to manage its own network both in France and in its overseas territories. The
infrastructure, deployed for ANTS, provides high availability and high quality services based
on a guaranteed speed, as well as a support and intervention centre.
"This new contract has strengthened Thales’s leadership as the French market leader in
secure identity solutions," said Marc Darmon, Executive Vice President, Secure
Communications & Information Systems. "Thales has assisted the French government in the
production of national identity cards for over 17 years and has generated more than 250
million secure documents around the world. This latest contract further consolidates our
position as a trusted partner in the field of secure identity documents."
The French market leader in civil biometric systems
In France, Thales's credentials include three of the largest civil biometrics programmes to
In early 2012, Thales developed a software application for the French Ministry of the Interior
enabling digital fingerprints to be captured and included with identity photographs in electronic
residence permits for foreign nationals in France. This biometric application has been installed
on 600 data acquisition stations to date and will ultimately be rolled out to more than 1,200 locations.
In 2010, Thales signed a contract with the French Ministry of the Interior to deploy a biometric data collection and transmission system to handle Schengen visa applications in several countries.
In 2009, Thales was selected by the French Ministry of the Interior and Ministry of Immigration
to design and deliver the Grégoire national biometric system, which incorporates the biometric
functions required for managing the residency of foreign nationals. This biometric solution
incorporates the TAMMIS (Thales’s Automated Multi Modal Identification System) automated
fingerprint identification systems developed by Thales.