CEN to Start a Biometrics Focus Group

May 21, 2004

Brussels, 20 May 2004

Biometrics is becoming increasingly important in today's society. Examples are the requirement for biometric identification mechanisms on travel documents and the use in application areas such as banking and public services.

In the context of standardization, this growing importance has led to the creation of a new sub-committee in ISO/IEC JTC1, SC37.

Following approaches from the European Commission and a number of European experts active in international biometric standardization, CEN/ISSS held an informal meeting on 25 February 2004 to overview the "state of the art".

This meeting was attended by 22 experts and representatives of the Commission (DGs ENTR, INFSO, JAI and TREN), plus the European Biometrics Forum, and it received presentations on the international standards work, principally in ISO/IEC JTC1 SC37 "Biometrics", but also in SCs 17 and and ISO TC68.

The experts present all felt it was highly beneficial to have a more frequent inter-contact on biometrics standards issues, and in particular to improve interface with the EU regulatory authorities, and improve awareness of the JTC1 work.

CEN/ISSS therefore proposes to establish a CEN/ISSS Focus Group on biometric issues, with the objective to improve information flow and compare notes about global progress. The Focus Group will not be a standards group as such, there being no evidence of requirements at this stage for any dedicated European work. The European Biometrics Forum is interested to collaborate with the proposed Group, from the perspective of industry awareness.

The Kick-Off meeting of the Focus Group will be in Brussels on 24 June 2004. At this meeting the Terms of Reference will be discussed and approved.

The Kick-Off meeting will also agree on its chair and secretariat (the latter being held by a CEN national Member). Candidates for the chair should be sent by 15 June to CEN/ISSS.

Participation in this meeting is open to all interested parties, but they should register in advance (before 15 June) with Luc Van den Berghe, the Workshop Manager in charge email

European Committee for Standardization
Comité Européen de Normalisation
Europäisches Komitee für Normung
© 1999, 2004 CEN. All rights reserved.

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