Biometric Popularity Increase

The UK population is now welcoming the use of biometrics, according to a recent survey conducted throughout homes and businesses across the UK.

The study shows that 76% of respondents are more in favour of biometrics than they were one year ago. The radical opinion change is due to perceived personal safety reasons; three quarters of survey respondents viewed biometric security devices as vital in combatting terrorism.

While the majority appears keen on the introduction of biometrics in airports, less than half of the respondents approved of the technology’s usage in the UK’s underground tube networks. Banking and retail sectors were seen as low priority areas for the technology, with 59% and 63% of respondents rejecting the use of biometrics in these areas, respectively.

In addition to the uncertainty surrounding its daily usage, the survey identified further concerns about how biometric technology will come into practice. Over half of the respondents (58%) weren’t aware that they could be subjected to biometric checks when traveling abroad. However, 63% claim to be aware of the pending introduction of new international standards that will mandate the logging of face and optionally, fingerprint data on passports.

Civil liberty infringements are another issue mentioned by almost a third of respondents, who were against the creation of a government biometric database, even if it lead to better crime detection rates.

Even though most Brits don’t actually understand what biometrics are, 76% of people in the UK are now more in favour of them than a year ago, but more than half (58%) of respondents did not know if they had been subject to biometric checks when travelling abroad.

Increased personal safety was named as the biggest driver for the shift in attitudes with eight in 10 people changing opinions in the last year. Three-quarters of people surveyed believe biometrics are important in combating terrorism, with only 17 per cent viewing intelligence information as more important to fighting terrorism than biometrics.

The UK population appears to be ready to welcome biometrics into everyday life with only nine per cent of respondents actively against their use in areas such as the rail network, the Tube, shops and airline networks.

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