Just came across this gem and wondered what you guys thought of this action by the US.
Is it OK?? Do they really need this to catch all those millions of terrorists....
Or is it just over-the-top paranoia/scare mongering??
I wasn't aware that partial finger printing was already standard either.
For my part - I can say that the one time I visited the USA a few years back (Flew into San Fran) - the US customs made me feel like a criminal simply because I didn't have the exact street address of my accommodation - as it had been booked by a friend who was to meet me at the airport. .. can't remember being finger printed though?Customs to collect visitors' 10 prints
Full sets allow better anti-terrorism checks
By Mimi Hall
Foreigners coming to the USA will soon be required to have 10 fingerprints scanned as part of a new government anti-terrorist effort, the Homeland Security Department says.
The plan for Customs and Border Protection officers to collect more biometric information from foreigners is one phase of a long-awaited upgrade to a border-security program put in place after 9/11. The security program, known as US-VISIT, aims to give government agents a better idea of who is coming into the country and catch people with forged passports. The federal government has spent $1.7 billion on the program.
Foreigners were previously required to get just two of their prints scanned when they arrived at a checkpoint. Upgrading the system to 10 fingerprints will enable more thorough checking against terrorist watch lists and databases of criminals and illegal immigrants.
Of course those guys were just doing their job - but unfortunately they had to be 'smart-arsed' about it and gave me a hard time. While waiting in the 'Secondary Customs room' I witnessed the same rude treatment of many foreigners - most in a worse position than myself due to language difficulties. Some were very old and frail, confused and crying.
Now - this doesn't reflect on the US population as a whole - on a personal level I believe they are the friendliest and most generous people in the world.... But the 'culture of suspicion' in customs etc, where everyone is a potential terrorist, seems to be way over the top to me....