Ben Wallace (Lancaster and Wyre, Conservative)
(1) what the recognition failure rate is of scans carried out in the pilot project Project Iris;
(2) what the reliability levels are of the scanning unit deployed in the 10 locations where Project Iris is being piloted.
Tony McNulty (Minister of State (Immigration, Citizenship and Nationality), Home Office; Harrow East, Labour)
The IRIS operational pilot went live in two locations at Heathrow Terminal two and Terminal four on
Failure to Enrol rate (FTR)—must be less than 2 per cent.
False Reject Rate (FRR)—must be less than 2 per cent.
False Accept Rate (FAR)—must be less than 0.001 per cent.
No biometric is 100 per cent. foolproof and biometrics do not have set error rates. The likelihood of errors is determined by the whole system and measures put in place throughout the whole process. Iris recognition has been chosen as the biometric for the IRIS scheme because it outperforms all other biometrics in terms of security, speed and accuracy. We are working with our supplier to ensure that all system error rates will be negligible and will not affect the integrity of the immigration control.
The pilot will be evaluated prior to commencing roll-out to eight other airport terminals from October 2005. Iris recognition is a method of securely recognising someone by the pattern of their iris.