Home Department written question – answered on 6th September 2010.

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Photo of Alan Johnson Alan Johnson Shadow Home Secretary and Shadow Minister for Women and Equalities

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps she plans to take to maintain passport security.

Photo of Theresa May Theresa May Minister for Women and Equalities, The Secretary of State for the Home Department

Passport security is extremely important. In operating the passport business, the Identity and Passport Service (IPS) will continue to work to UK Government security standards and international standards on document security. To ensure greater efficiency and an improvement in the detection of fraud, IPS plans to develop a risk based approach to processing passport applications. In relation to document security, a new design of the UK passport will be introduced from 5 October 2010 with improved physical security features. IPS also plans to examine the options for enhancing the electronic security of the UK passport, and for greater investment in facial recognition technology. The IPS will continue to closely monitor international developments in passport security in order to improve its efficiency and effectiveness.

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